Monday, March 25, 2013

The Back Story: Our First Date

A mutual love of food is ingrained in cubes's and my relationship. In fact, had it not been for a desire to explore restaurants in the city, we may never have started dating at all. March 25, 2009, kicked off a standing Wednesday night dinner date tradition. One that we recently restarted on Tuesday nights.
Crossword Puzzle to Encourage Mingling
Food was so important to us that for our wedding each table number was a restaurant we had dined at. Each table tent included a brief paragraph explaining the significance of the restaurant and two or three snapshots of us and friends or family at the place, food we'd eaten, or photos of the place. When creating our seating chart, I tried to match people with a restaurant we'd eaten at with them. To encourage people to socialize with other tables during the reception, I created a crossword puzzle that featured the restaurants. The clues were in the descriptions on the various table tents. The table tents also allowed people who lived outside San Francisco to get more details about our relationship and who we were as a couple.
Our First Date: Four Years Ago Today
For places that played a significant role in our relationship, they were also included in our wedding program. As you can imagine, a first date is pretty significant. So, from our wedding program, here's the story of cubes's and my first date:
    Chapter 9: “It’s Just a Dinner” A date was set for dinner. A restaurant in the Mission - Limon - was decided upon. A plan was hatched. The girl would take BART from where she worked to 16 Street Mission BART station.
    A brief aside. Now while the girl had been living in the City for almost three months by this point and commuting to Walnut Creek daily (to an office right across the street from the Pleasant Hill BART station) she’d never yet taken BART. She’d taken BART years ago from Fremont to Oakland City Center and had a few bad experiences. She’s also slightly claustrophobic and had been having nightmares about the train stopping in the Transbay Tube. She’d been actively resisting commuting via BART.
    But... the girl hates to be late for anything and used to strive to arrive 10 minutes early to everything. She knew that traffic could be iffy and she didn’t want to be late for dinner. So the girl commuted to work via BART for the very first time.
    Okay, back to the story.
    The girl rode up the escalator to street level. She was nervous; she had butterflies in her stomach. What if he wasn’t there? What would they talk about?
    She looked up and saw the boy. He was right there waiting for her. Their eyes met and the butterflies flew away. They exchanged pleasantries and headed off to the restaurant. The boy began alerting the girl as to which streets and which sides of the street were best to avoid as they walked. (The boy scored points for caring about the girl’s safety.) At the restaurant they discovered it was closed for renovations. Oops. Luckily they were in the Mission where good food abounds. The boy suggested The Corner. (The boy scored points for being able to roll with an unexpected change in plans.)
    Off they went to the new spot. The Corner had music blaring loudly through its speakers. They quickly retreated and found Weird Fish.
    While totally not planned, the boy had taken the girl to one of the few restaurants in the city where she could eat dessert. (The boy scored points for this.) He quickly told her it was just coincidence, he hadn’t been aware of the availability of vegan desserts. (The points the boy initially scored tripled - the girl loves honesty.)
    It was still early when they finished dinner so they headed off to Little Baobab for a drink. (Note that this bar was less than a block away from where the boy was living at the time. The girl didn’t know about the proximity and the boy never mentioned it. The boy scored points weeks later when the girl found out.)
    Drinks finished, plans made for dinner the following week, the boy escorted the girl back to 16 Street Mission BART station. Girl caught train home and texted that she’d made it home safely and had a lovely time.
    See? Just a dinner. But the girl’s and boy’s first, and everyone’s got to start somewhere. The date it started? It was March 25th 2009.
Did your first date start a tradition in your relationship?
Bon Appetit!
Credits: All layouts designed by and images taken by Eden Hensley Silverstein for The Road to the Good Life. Time Capsule is a monthly series, published the second week of each month (Monday for family-related picks, Tuesday for fashion, Wednesday for home, Thursday for food, and Friday for design), featuring fashion and decor from the movies and the TV shows of the 1950s through the 1970s, sharing recipes from my vintage cookbook collection, or flashing back to what was happening this day or this week in a previous year or years.