I had been curious about the restaurant for a few years, but it wasn’t one of those that opened at lunch time so I never got the opportunity to get a glimpse inside. Until now! The appearance was deceptively small from the outside. Stepping in through the door was like stepping back into time. The wooden partitions and posts were probably original from their colonial heyday. The space was generous, the lighting amber dim. I expected to see the ‘Massa’ at any moment! We were the only diners so far. I was happy about that because my stomach was beginning to be embarrassingly loud. It had clearly missed the memo on best behaviour.
When the food arrived my taste buds celebrated and the aroma invited my nose to the party. The food was delectable and the company was amiable. “Would you like to try some of mine?” he asked. “But we have the same thing its just I have fish and you have prawns” I said. “Mine might taste different” he laughed. I shook my head and giggled. I took a small piece of yam from the edge of his plate dismissing the tiny drop of sauce on the edge. Stop! My stomach was contracting and my salivary glands were doing more than masticulating. Get up, now! “Do you know where the toilets are?” “No, I’ve never been here before”. Slow breathes. He called the waitress over. “Toilet please” I blurted. She really wasn’t walking fast enough for my liking but I couldn’t open my mouth again. Lady, move it! Before she had even finished pointing I had worked out the toilet door. There wasn’t time to knock. If there was someone in there, they would be very sorry. I flung the door open and braced my hands on the toilet seat as I fell and emptied the contents of my tummy.
Round one complete. I knew I would have a few seconds to catch my breath. “Are you ok?” he enquired. He must have followed me from the table. Oops, no time to answer, round two was here. While I knelt there waiting for the end of the deluge I heard the door open. Dude no! I felt his hand on my back, he started to pat it reassuringly. Round two confirmed that there wouldn’t be another bout. I took a few deep breathes and reached for the toilet paper to wipe my mouth. Then I flushed the toilet. I didn’t want to turn round. I was mortified, being sick at home with family is perfectly normal but on a first date? Sigh. “Hey, are you ok now?” I was blown away by the concern in his voice and face. How many guys see you at your worst on the first date? He had, and he was still there. That got him many votes in my book. I was uneasy about returning to the table and understandably hesitant about finishing my meal, but after taking a bite my body said that it was fine.
Thinking back, I believe that it was at this point that I had a sudden deep respect for him and the seed of love was planted. It’s funny how easy we are sometimes won over. This isn’t necessarily a character flaw, it just means that when it comes to romance or I suppose relationships in general that we need to pray for discernment to detect the wolves in sheep clothing who are only too happy to devour our trusting and kindly nature. ‘Give not that which is holy unto dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you’ Matthew 7:6 King James Bible.