First appeared in Novembers – Abuja City pages
Love and dating in London
1. Do not expect for your date to come and pick you up or ‘drop’ you home. It might happen but it’s not guaranteed. You might meet up somewhere and both get the Tube. It doesn’t mean that you should cross him of your list of potential toasters– it’s just the way people live here. Anyway it gives you more time to gist and get to know each other better. If you don’t mind looking gooey eyed at each other in a packed train carriage or people listening in to your sweet nothings. We are a very broad minded society. The most passionate kiss in a packed carriage will hardly get a second glance during the rush hour.
2. Do not do not I repeat do not ask your date how much he earns, whether he has any serious diseases, where he intends to be in life when he is 40 or any other long deep meaningful questions on your first date. Especially iIf you want to see him again.
3. Please do not assemble a ‘tag team’ to ‘escort’ you to your date and expect your date to pay. It is not a good idea to invite a girlfriend along to ‘escort’ you on a date. Women don’t escort themselves around. That is better left to secondary school girls.
4. Don’t tell the world about your date. It will be seen as bragging and you need to keep your friends. If it doesn’t work out you will need some shoulders to cry on and people to socialise with.
5. Do not order everything on the menu, or precisely the most expensive stuff on the menu. If you do not want to be labelled cheap, a gold digger or a glutton.
6. Do not think that a guy’s idea of a good date is ‘escorting’ you while you go from shop to shop looking for shoes or dresses.
7. If you do decide to go shopping do not ask your date to ‘raise’ you or ‘bless’ you so you can buy any item of clothing, jellewry or anything else in order not to be classified into the ‘Gold-digger file – Avoid at all costs’ file of your date. Even worse is to take him to the Hairdressers and ask him – in your sweetest voice to ‘sponsor’ your millionaire braids, weave on or retouch. You need to show him you need a man, a life partner and not a sponsor.
8. When going on a date in London – African time doesn’t apply. You might think it’s cute to arrive an hour late and think that the guy is still waiting for you at Liverpool Street station. You might discover that he felt this was extremely disrespectful – to keep him – a working professional person like yourself, waiting aimlessly in a packed train station, after a hard day’s work when he could be sitting at home watching Football.
9. Do not tell him about how hard life has been for you, the men that used and abused and jilted you, your problems at work or the immigration officials that are chasing you around London. It is a date. A chance to get to know someone better, not a confessional.
10. Judge the occasion. If it’s a date after work – dress smart casual. A jacket and smart top and trousers not an evening gown and tiara! If he is taking you to the theatre or his work party – jeans and Nikes will not be appreciated.
11. Put your best foot forward and show him that you are a woman who is hardworking and who is keen to improve herself. Tell him (without bragging) a little about the Saturday class you are taking in creative writing and desk top publishing. The fact that you are working and studying part time during the weekends. Let him realise that you are looking for a man to partner with so you can achieve Destiny together. You are not looking for a man to sponsor, raise, rescue or carry you. You bring wealth, destiny, a good work ethic, inspiration, integrity, grace, elegance, beauty, love, a Godly heart and all any man can ever need and he is truly blessed to have someone like you in his life.