So apologies in advance for that..

We're in the swooning phase. You know, where everything is fucking magical and new. Three weeks in. That's the way it's supposed to be, I think.

I don't typically swoon. I am not a swooner. I did not swoon on or after our first date. I think he did though. He sat there for two and a half hours just smiling at me.

It made me feel uncomfortable.

"This guy is probably a serial killer," I thought to myself. "It rubs the lotion on its skin," the voice in my head kept chanting.

I had run out of things to talk about after five minutes and he was so quiet, sitting there... just smiling.

I decided to fill the silence with my own voice and only took brief breaks from doing so to drink from the smoothie I had ordered.

It was mango and it was delicious.

Date number two was less awkward. I had considered cancelling, but he had promised to do his best to keep up his end of the conversation. He was better, but he still largely just sat there and listened as I rambled on. This time I drank gin and tonics and snacked on deep fried pickles. I did not try to fill all of the silences. When they happened, I let them. I used the opportunity to glance up at the television, in the bar where we sat, to check the score of the hockey game.

"Do you follow hockey?" I asked him.

"Not really," he replied.

"Me either," I confessed, but I am still Canadian and it was the Leafs playing the Habs. If I did not at least know the outcome, I would probably lose my right to universal healthcare.

When we kissed at the end of the night, I was still undecided.

And then, suddenly, a few days later, it was as though a switch had been flicked somewhere. My productivity went down the drain and my level of corniness flew through the roof.


The stars were bright and twinkling overhead. We sat in a giant circle, seated on cushions, all wrapped tightly in blankets, around a fire.

Three brothers sang songs in arabic as they huddled around the flames, preparing a late night tea. Their voices and the crackling of the fire the only noise in the darkness.

I was struck by the sense that this feeling was something I was unlikely to recapture again in life. It was a memory I would carry with me for the rest of my life. One that I'd look to others who'd shared it and laugh. "Remember the time we sat around a fire in the middle of desert in Jordan and drank tea and smoked hookahs under the stars with a bunch of bedouins?"