In the past week, I’ve gone on two girl dates.
What’s a girl date, you say?
girl date noun
:When two women, one or both of whom are heterosexual, who don’t know each other very well or don’t see each other very often meet (often in the evening) to get to know each other better or reconnect by having coffee, a drink or going to a movie. [This is a rudimentary definition that still needs to be approved by Merriam and Webster.]
On Friday, I met M. at Poste, where we each ordered the house red wine and split some truffle fries (this flies in the face of my “better eating” post, but I swear I’m doing better). M. said she needed a drink because she quit her job the hour prior, and her nerves were still crazy. After sucking down the wine and talking about how to get through tough times (she recently broke up with her boyfriend), we saw The King’s Speech in a packed movie theater and then walked home about two miles in the dark, chatting mostly about what I should bring to Africa (she had tips because she went to Kenya over the holidays). [The answer? Binoculars and a button-down LL Bean shirt with SPF 50, both of which I have ordered].
And then last night, D. asked me if I wanted to go see a movie and we agreed on True Grit. (Mind you, I have seen two other movies in the theater the entire year — and now I’ve hit two in one week.) She invited me over for a quick dinner beforehand — and her husband J. ate with us and then drove us to and from the Avalon theater. D. bought the movie tickets, I paid for the two medium chais. All in all, it was a satisfying girl date with a really cool woman.
See, here’s the thing about girl dates. They can lead to (or in some cases help to nurture) really great friendships. They just take a little perseverance — and sometimes a little bit of awkwardness. It’s harder to meet friends when you’re out of school and a lot of people have children and most people are content with their friend circles. But if you push a little — if you meet someone and say, “She’s really cool, I want to be her friend,” and actually follow up on it, it can be amazingly rewarding.
I met my best friend in D.C. on the street nearly seven years ago (I’ve told the story about a bazillion times, but basically, I was holding flowers, she asked me if it was my birthday, I said “no” but then vomited out a long story about the flowers, and then we walked and talked for five blocks before I awkwardly asked her for her card). Shortly thereafter, we had a really awkward girl date at Teaism — and S. was convinced I didn’t like her. I don’t know how that turned around, or why (my memory fails me), but S. says it’s because I followed through. S. has become one of my best friends in life — and a main source of inspiration and support.
I firmly believe there is always room for new friends — as we evolve as people and learn what we need and don’t need and have patience for and don’t have patience for and who inspires us and who drains us and who we can really call in a time of crisis. Thanks M. and D. for the girl dates! Let’s go out again!