Sarah and I met back in 2013, just before a St. Louis summer was to heat up. She was a house mom for teenage girls, I worked at a banquet hall. She enjoyed musicals, the arts, city life and small town living. I grew up watching musicals, came from artsy family, wanted to live in the city but grew up in a small town. We both had experiences the other did not; and we both had similarities that we appreciated about the other. Our first summer was filled with dates to almost every free thing in St. Louis. Not to say I was a cheap date, rather the Lou is filled with many wonderful adventures that don't cost a lot.
Our first date took place on a Food Truck Friday evening in Tower Grove Park. To me, it looked like the largest neighborhood picnic one may cram into a beautiful park. Food trucks lined the winding street that ran through the park, a band blaring their tunes near the pavilion, lines of people waiting to taste the latest creations of the traveling caravan of trucks, pickup games of football and catch in the open fields behind the crowds of people sitting, laying and enjoying their meals on extra large blankets. I didn't meet her there. It was after she finished her own picnic with friends, that she met me at the corner of Grand and Arsenal.
I was sitting there waiting for her, doodling lines and curves, mimicking the building across the street. As strangers in person, we felt like we knew each other with all the many hours of emailing, texting and phone calls over the last month. We exchanged introductions briefly, smiled and walked over to get ice cream for dessert. Our first date had begun and it lasted until two in the morning as we walked Tower Grove until dusk, sat outside a closed restaurant on Grand until midnight and then at Uncle Bill's with second dessert until we both agreed it was late and had to go home. Sarah and I talked about anything. Not one 'long pause awkward moment' filled our evening together. It was a very pleasant and almost a natural first date, if there could ever be one in the history of first dates. Just about a year and half later, we were married under the changing leaves of fall, a season we both love.