Today is a special day for Matt and me…it’s the 13th anniversary of our first date! The backstory is kind of amusing, so I thought I’d share it today.
Matt was home for the summer after his sophomore year of college at the University of Illinois. Every year in May, the Effingham Daily News publishes a special little magazine that has pictures of all of the local graduates. Matt apparently spent one evening going through this publication and found my picture…and decided he wanted to meet me! Awww. And, possibly, slightly creepy.
He was working for the park district for the summer, which meant he spent his days driving around with a coworker friend in a pickup truck, stopping at various places for snacks and drinks. And occasionally preparing a baseball diamond for play and emptying ballpark trash cans, enough so that he was really tan.
Some of Matt’s coworkers knew my brothers, so they told him that I worked at Homewood Grill, this ice cream and sandwich shop that’s been around forever. It became one of their frequent stops when they needed a break from all that hard work driving around. They came by so often that the girls I worked with started wondering which one of them liked one of us, because the amount of ice cream they were eating was unnatural. I mean, the ice cream is really, really, good, but still…we didn’t have many customers that came by that frequently.
I don’t remember exactly how the rest of this all transpired, except that a friend of his, K, came up to talk to me and asked if I was dating someone (Nope…I was waiting until I got to the U of I in the fall to meet someone, of course!). I told him I wasn’t, and he then asked if my friend M was dating anyone, because he was interested in her. It was decided…we’d go on a double date.
I know that Matt called me the weekend before our date, but we missed each other and didn’t actually talk until the Sunday before. I remember that my mom and I went up to my college orientation days Monday and Tuesday, and all I could think about was my Tuesday night date! I remember my friend M saying something to the effect of “How do you know he’ll even like you when you’re wearing makeup and have your hair done?” because I [mistakenly] thought he’d only ever seen me at the Grill, with my hair pulled back and no makeup on, covered in the spray of ice cream that making a milkshake produces.
Fortunately for him, he didn’t tell me about the senior picture thing until we’d been dating for quite a while, otherwise I might have thought he was someone to be worried about.
On our first date on June 27, 1995, we went mini-golfing and to see the movie Crimson Tide, which we talked all the way through and have never actually seen (really, we were talking.). Though M and K weren’t meant to be (and each has actually married other nice people and had families), Matt and I went off to school together in the fall.
The end. Or actually, I guess that’s just the beginning…