The first thing to get straight is the fact that this was not explicitly a ‘date’. He asked to meet me one on one after I had confessed my feelings for him, with no mention of the reason we were meeting. We were already pretty good friends, and I had no idea if he felt the same or if he was trying to let me down gently.
At the time I was working at Greggs and had just gotten off a 6am to 12pm shift. Unfortunately, I was running a little late due to the lunchtime rush, and he had arrived early. After throwing on some nice clothes, I ran out into the square where we planned to meet. Spotting him facing the opposite way, I immediately called out his name, perhaps a little too loudly.
But that wasn’t all. The second we started walking, a combination of severe nerves and dehydration from a boiling afternoon resulted in me spilling water all over my top. So far so great.
We went to a little Italian place to get takeaway calzones. I went to pay for mine and unfortunately their card machine was not working, and being a total disaster, I had no cash. My ‘not-date’ then paid for my food, which given the unknown status of our relationship was painfully embarrassing.
Turns out that wasn't even true; he had skipped cricket with the boys to meet me - he just didn't know what to say. We were both very awkward teens.
I had brought some donuts from work for us, and when he chose my favourite (the Lemon Sherbet ring), I didn’t know whether to love or to hate him. We sat on that park bench for nearly 5 hours, gradually getting more comfortable in each other’s company and eventually the conversation moved to the topic of ‘us’.
It turned out he felt the same but wanted to make sure by meeting me in person. And despite that absolute mess of a date and a subsequent long-distance relationship, neither of us have ever looked back (despite getting the only sunburn I've had in ten years that day).