Remember the firsts

We’ve all had them.

And we all want more. Experiencing things anew is a lovely pleasure. Don’t knock it.

First day at school. First kiss. First time. First love. Oh yeah. First love.

You’re never too old to have one.

Recently, I had a first date.

You might not know about it, as I was trying not to talk it up too much. Trying to play it cool and just rock up later saying, sure, it was a good date.

It was a set up, so I have to say thanks to friends for putting me out there. Because I wouldn’t have done it myself.

And we started off alright, hopeful and thinking – I could like you, you could like me. I put off the date a couple of times. Waiting til the weather was better. Til I was wearing the right clothes. Eventually I bit the bullet and said, hey, let’s go for a ride.

Took a bit of adjusting. Because they weren’t really my type. But there was newness alright – a stiffness of strange, a flex where usually there was resistance, resistance where usually there was flex.

In this first date I was remembering my first date with my previous love, and trying to tell myself – “it’s just because it’s new, don’t worry about it, just ride it out and you’ll get it together.”

First big hill though, we struggled, not quite getting in gear and definitely feeling our differences. That which had seemed exciting at first, the newness, the difference, suddenly seemed fraught and awkward as I was left trying to put on the brakes.

I mean it wasn’t the worst date I’ve ever had, in fact, it came kind of dangerously close on a lot of levels. They’re retro and I’m retro and we both like riding. But sometimes you just know – you could work on adjusting yourself and hoping they’ll change and maybe you’ll like their friends, and really you already like their friends which doesn’t happen all the time. But somethings people just can’t change. And sometimes you are too old to adjust.

At least I’m getting out there.

Thanks for paying for the coffees, but I’m just not sure we’re right for each other.

I hope you meet someone nice.

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Dear friends, don’t stop trying to set me up though. I guess I should have been more specific – 48 body seeks 48 frame for good times. No commitment required. I’ll still be seeing other bikes. If you want to go back to your real partner after a while, I won’t judge, I’m open minded.

By Eleanor Jackson

Eleanor Jackson is a Filipino Australian poet, performer, arts producer, cyclist, writer, gal about town, feminist, freewheeler, and friend.

2 comments

  1. Ah well, the little Giant can go back to its old vocation of introducing teenages to the road. Hope it hasn’t put you off road bikes, the newer ones are a lot tighter and responsive. Love your write up.

    1. Not deterred in the slightest Bruce! Only sad that it didn’t quite work out – thank you so much for the “set up”… Maybe there should be a cyclist/bike RSVP.com?

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