Dating Stories: The Lady on the Train

I saw a women on a train and I thought, Hey I should ask her out.

You know? There’s that saying that true love appears when you least expect it, and there’s love at first sight, and strike while the iron is hot, and never look a gift horse in the mouth, and all that. Well, I thought, Yeah, I mean, What’s the difference between asking someone “What’s the time?” and asking them “Want to date?” aside from the repercussion?

So I walked over to her. I staggered really. The train was about as uneasy as my stomach. I felt a churning in the gut, the kind that happens after mixing curry with vodka shots. Plus my brain was saying Don’t do it! Partly from fear of rejection, but also because, I admit, I’m not really one to go and interrupt someone’s day to ask them a question of sexual advancement.

I mean, I didn’t really think of it as sexual advancement. I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking I spotted a bit of hot stuff and wanted to have a go, but really, my understanding of relationships is that you meet someone you like, and if they like you, you go out and get to spend extra time with them. But all I was doing was looking at her and thinking, She seems nice.

She was looking out of the window, watching trees and brick walls pass, and she has a look of something important on her mind. You know that look? Not too important, but interesting. And I thought, I wonder what she’s thinking about.

That’s what motivated me, mostly. Obviously there’s sex but that wasn’t what got me started.

Anyway, I went up to her seating bay, shaking, sweating, my brain feeling as though it had taken the afternoon off. She was seated at the window, next to her was a space, then a guy reading a newspaper. There were a few other people in the carriage. I called across to her.

I said, “Excuse me, Miss, would you like to go on a date sometime?” I said Miss, like I’m Mr Darcy come upon a lady in a field who’s milking a cow and I appreciate her forearms and handling of a bucket. I don’t know. It was the most gallant way I could think to ask.

Anyway, I sensed the guy with a newspaper had stopped reading. I stopped reading newspapers years ago. Who still reads a newspaper? Get a phone mate. But he’s eyes peer over the page, like other passengers, taking note of what was now going on.

The women, she turned from the window towards me. Her hair with an auburn halo from the sun behind her. She reached to her hears, brushing her neck, and pulled two earphones out. Then she said, “What?”

I gulped, and go again.

Excuse me, (I didn’t say Miss this time. Once was enough) would you like to have the time, to go out with me sometime?”

That was the best I could do, leering across a couple of seats, asking a stranger for some social time. It’s not a normal thing to do. She didn’t think it was normal either. She was probably enjoying her quiet time.

She said, “Who the fuck are you?” and asked why don’t I fuck off?

I said, “Sorry,” and backed away. I sulked into a back corner. Sticking my head between my knees. I remember seeing the newspaper guy’s hands had tightened around the newspaper, as if ready to start some shit.

Mum said it was lucky I didn’t throw up on her, again.

Which isn’t fair. It was only one time that I had a congestion, and I sneezed, and mucus came out. It wasn’t vomit. It was a thick spit, and I didn’t react in time to cover my mouth.

Anyway, I was sitting, sulking, head towards my knees, and I looked up, and I saw the newspaper man talking to the women. Hey? I broke the ice, gave him some confidence, and now he was chatting away. Compared to me he was this cool, good looking guy who wasn’t a creep. I was his wingman. He left the train with her. Newspaper under his arm. Probably talking about jerks they had both meet.

Good on them though. Maybe they’ll get married and I’ll be the matchmaker they remember.


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