Why I hate dating (and conversely why I love romance novels)

18 Aug

Tomorrow I have a date. We’re going to play tennis and then have brunch at one of the numerous cafes on the beach. I’ve never met this guy before but I’m assured by my friends that he’s a nice guy and I’ll love him.

Personally I find him a little creepy – rather too presumptuous and forward for my liking, how does he know ‘we have so much in common’ on the basis of a half hour text conversation? As for being the ‘girl of his dreams’ and ‘out of his league’, seriously? I’m a tad scared he’ll have planned the wedding and named our kids by the end of the first date.

In addition this ‘date’ is going to consume a lot of my ‘me’ time and I kind of resent that each time I speak to him he tries to stretch it out even more. What started as a quick half hour of tennis now looks like its going to take an entire day and I can’t remember the last time I spent more than a couple of hours with anyone (well I can, it was late Feb/early March but that was an exception, even my friends are rationed to a few hours once or twice a year).

I like my alone time, I need it. I crave solitude in the same way others crave company, or chocolate. Most of the time I can go from Friday evening to Sunday evening without having to talk to anyone in person and that’s the way I like it.

After a week spent in the office with people constantly demanding my attention, I need that time away to recharge. Being chief problem fixer is draining, mentally and physically and I need that space where no one is demanding anything or relying on me to fix their problems. Where there are no expectations.

That’s not to say that I don’t speak to anyone in that time, I do, my phone bills text section fills 43 double sided A4 sheets each month and that doesn’t include whatsapp, Facebook, twitter, kik and all the various other apps I use to communicate. I just prefer to talk at a distance, where I can write, or work or walk without the other person getting annoyed that they don’t have my full attention.

It’s not that I dislike people, I just rarely find one who doesn’t want more from me than I’m willing to give. This is why I hate dates. Too many expectations, too many demands and pressures, too many potential headaches.

So why do I like romance novels?

Because they’re simple, there’s no ‘dating’, no wasting of time, no hesitancy. Two people meet, there’s that instant passion that’s so often lacking in real life, and so they jump into bed and fall in love. Can you imagine a Mills and Boon hero taking the girl on numerous interminable dates, sitting in the pub for months talking while they ‘get to know each other’, struggling through yet another chick flick to show his devotion, it just wouldn’t happen.

And this is why I hate dating. Because it reminds me that the fantasy I gained from romance novels is just that, a fantasy.

Oh and in case you were wondering about the title of this blog, seven daffodils is a folk song I first heard performed by Foggy Dew-O on one of my fathers cassettes and I fell in love with the simplicity of the song.

‘I do not have a mansion, I haven’t any land, not e’en a paper dollar, to crinkle in my hand. But I can show you the sunrise, on a thousand hills, and kiss you, and give you, seven daffodils.’

So yes, I am a closet romantic. Don’t judge me!

The ‘single rose’, well that’s me. ‘Nuff said really.

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