The Attic Mouse was introduced to me by the Hip Chick, a friend from school who I haven’t seen properly for years. She was actually the source of his nickname, which he randomly mentioned to me whilst telling me how he knew the Hip Chick. Apparently when he first moved to Reading he had essentially squatted in her loft, and she had described how quiet he was by calling him ‘the Attic Mouse’.
If I’m honest, it’s quite hard to come up with a cool and original date in Reading. The more I travel into London to complete this challenge, the more I realise just how easy it is to come up with a unique evening in the Capital, however being single and original in a small town is a bit tougher.
The Attic Mouse contacted me quite early on in my challenge, however he was away from Reading with work for a few weeks, so by the time we came to scheduling in a date, I’d already learned to ask if we could do something a bit different. His answer was golf!
We met at a golfing range … somewhere I’d never been in Reading, and an activity I’d only tried once before.
We shared a bucket of balls, the majority of which I chipped far too close to the tee (if you look closely at the photo above, I hit one literally a metre into the grass!). The Attic Mouse (TAM) was clearly a pro, hitting shots way past the 150 and 200 yard markers. Meanwhile, I happily aimed for the nets and trampolines between where we were standing and the 50 yard marker.
TAM had brought a full selection of golf clubs with him for us to try, and I had varying degrees of success with them. I missed the ball A LOT, though he rather generously told me how good my swing was, even when I wasn’t actually contacting with the golf ball!
The driving range was more high tech than any I’d ever visited before, and electronically set the balls on the tee for you, as well as allowing computerised adjustment to the tee height. All very fancy (and completely unnecessary when you can barely hit the golf ball five metres!)
After we finished the bucket of balls, I asked if TAM had had dinner. He had. I’d driven to the golf range straight from work, and asked if he minded going somewhere for a drink where I could also grab dinner.
It was one of the hottest days of the year, so TAM agreed, provided I suggested somewhere with air-con.
We drove to Caversham, a nearby suburb of Reading, with lots of restaurants and pubs. I suggested Kyrenia, a Greek restaurant I know well, and TAM said he’d be happy to eat again, as he’d only had half a pizza. I then proceeded to convince him into four courses of meze!
We chatted comfortably, whilst tucking into olives, pitta, taramasalata, tzatziki, humous, various salads, dolmers, calimari, some very dodgy sausages, which were presented very oddly decorated with two meatballs per sausage (!), and halloumi. Then came the mains – kebabs, greek salad and heaps of pork. When we could barely move for food, out came desert – a fruit platter.
Despite me forcing him into a second dinner, TAM seemed to enjoy the food. He didn’t know Caversham well, and was impressed with Kyrenia. In fact he ate more of the main meal than I managed, and I hadn’t had half a pizza as a ‘starter’!
We joked about how we’d earned our dinner with the massive physical exertion of the golf (in reality, the most exercise we’d got was trying to quickly sneak onto the grass to retrieve the balls I’d barely hit two metres, without any of the staff seeing we were using the golf balls more than once!). The evening was relatively simple, but really comfortable, and I could see myself quite happily being friends with TAM. I’ve said it before (and who knows, one of these times it might actually work out …) but I could definitely see TAM dating my sister! He was really arty – an animator by trade, and definitely someone I could imagine either my sister or some of my single friends fancying. Whilst he was probably too slight and short for me (I think I was perhaps an inch shorter than him), he was such a nice guy, and really good company.
I had a really fun date, and a genuinely interesting, easy evening. Conversation was happily uncomplicated, and it was nice to not feel like I wasn’t having to try too hard to make conversation. I think both of us had a really enjoyable evening, and with most of my school friends having migrated to London, it was nice to meet a potential new friend in my home town.
The only downside of the date, was that the restaurant was bizarrely full of tiny flies … possibly because someone had left the front door open, and at times both TAM and I were getting a bit creeped out by how many were landing on our plates! That’s not to take anything away from the food – which was genuinely lovely, and really good value for money (especially on Tuesdays when I think they do two for one) but it did get me itching, paranoid that the tiny flies were landing on me!
We met – at a golf driving range in Reading
I wore … a crimson lace top, black cropped trousers, and black lace ballet pumps (WAY too hot for what turned out to be a 33 degree day!)
He wore … jeans and a t-shirt
I drank – Diet Coke, he drank – full fat Coke
We talked about – Canada, teenage jobs, travelling, work, America, Cheesecake factory, flies, flies invading our flats!
The date lasted – 3 hours
The date ended – because we were the last customers in the restaurant, and they were clearly trying to close up!
Marks out of ten – tough to score really highly in Reading compared to some of the London dates, but he was a really lovely guy, and I had a fun night. Never been a massive golf fan, so maybe a 7.5/10. But just to put into context how well I got on with him as a friend, have already invited him to my 30th birthday, as I think some of my single friends will love him!
Next date? Tomorrow night with Mr Twenty/Forty
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx