I am relatively new to dating.
I was married for a fair old while, and never really planned to climb back up on the shelf. But for most of last year, I sat up there, on the shelf, with a bucket of dust and some knackered old Happy Meal toys for company.
I have found it gets a bit lonely on the shelf, and after a while (and a shit load of Prosecco), I eventually worked up the courage to sit down, whip out the laptop and sign up to an internet dating site.
Bloody hell – for all you happily marrieds out there – internet dating is a whole new minefield….
There are some curious people out there in the world, many of whom can’t spell and feel it is appropriate to shorten the three-letter word ‘you’ to ‘u’ when introducing themselves.
Even the Happy Meal toys had better grammatical skills.
But rather like the Next Sale, if you battle on through the crowds, and sort out through the crap, you can sometimes find a nice new top (or a man who can spell) amongst the chaos.
So I have been on a few dates.
It has been scary, funny, nerve-wracking, and insightful. Turns out I get verbal diarrhea when I meet a new person, and not all chaps like a lady who simply cannot stop talking.
But some do.
Which is a plus, because the shelf is getting dustier.
But yet I still seem to get the dating m’larkey wrong.
I read an article that stated when getting back into the dating game, one should try to make an effort, dress nice, go to wine bars, win them over with intellectual conversation, wear pretty frocks and don’t drink too much.
I took my latest date paddleboarding…..
Rather than a flowing dress, I wore a skin-tight, unforgiving, wetsuit. I styled my hair, but after I had toppled into the Thames, it looked like I had combined a bad perm with a tub of brylcreem – not quite the sexy, sophisticated look I had aimed for. Instead of tantalising talk, my date and I tried to do headstands on inflatable boards in the pouring rain.
I need to re read the dating guides….
Because it is not normal to go on a date when you end up blue with cold, with Alice Cooper style make up and hair that looks like it has been nowhere near a salon.
It was so much bloody fun.
My friend Andrew, who runs Get More Adventure took us out for a two hour session on a paddleboard. Hopefully he managed to reassure my date that when not gasping for air in the Thames, I really was quite normal, (sort of – kind of). Andrew, in two hours, sorted us out with an understanding of how to manoeuvre the board, how to turn, how to paddle, and how to not to giggle so much that you fall off….
He failed on teaching us on how to do a head stand on the board without falling in – but the process of trying brought tears of laughter to my eyes.
It may not have been a typical date – but it was one of the best I have ever had.
Paddleboarding is an any weather sport, and so much fun, and suitable for all levels. Check out my lovely friends webpage here, and if you are local to Oxford I can highly recommend giving it a go – even if you are on a date!
Get More Adventure are Oxfordshire’s first Stand Up Paddle Boarding School offering beginners lessons for groups of up to 6 people, with 1/2 day, full day and weekend trips also available.
They deliver bespoke challenge and adventure packages for charities, groups, families, individuals and companies; and can offer exciting adventures like mountain treks & the 3 peaks challenge, city treks, international marathons, Jurassic coast walks, exploring the Ridgeway, team away days, abseiling, paddle boarding, microadventures, night hikes, wild camping and more.
Plus you get to spend time with my friend Andrew, who makes every adventure a fun one!