They enter the club. Children and their parents are playing bowling on the family side and she almost thinks they are going to play as well, but he takes her to his favourite side, the actual club. The pleasant smell of alcohol mixed with tobacco welcomes her as she enters, bringing her good vibes, the ones she’s been longing for since high school.
“This place smells like a lot of alcohol and cigarettes everywhere…” she complains.
“Oh, uxolo sisi,” he says, “I assumed you’d like it.”
“Don’t worry, I’m just acting up. I love it,” she giggles, “I’m not a traditional church girl, you know?”
They both laugh. They sit at the bar, order some drinks. Good music plays on large and satisfying speakers with music videos on a big LED TV screen, and a cricket match plays on a smaller TV in front of them. People are drinking, some are smoking while others are playing pool. Everyone is relaxed and minding their own business.
This is a vibe, where has he been all my life? she asks herself.
They sit on the bar chairs and talk about the things they like, mostly family, school and the importance of having a balance in life. As she is sitting in front of him in the low light, she notices how attentive he is when she speaks, how his smile lights up the room and how his eyes shine in his chocolate brown skin.
“Is it already ten past five?” he asks.
“Time flies. We should go so that we can catch the movie from the beginning,” she says.
He finishes his drink and looks surprised when he realises that she had finished hers a long time ago.
“I get thirsty, a lot…” she says.
“Here, take a sip from my glass,” he offers.
“Is this beer?” she asks.
“Yes, but it’s different from other beers,” he giggles.
She laughs and takes a sip. She takes a phone out of her bag and asks him to take pictures with her. They take pictures and she notices how shy but cooperative he is.
“Don’t you get nervous taking pictures while people are watching?” he asks.
“Hell no,” she laughs, “people always watch when you take pictures, you just have to ignore them.”
They rush to the cinema as soon as they finish taking pictures. He buys two tickets.
“Which snack would you like?” he asks.
“I’m not a popcorn person, but I also don’t like sweets, they’re bad for my skin. So, I’ll take the popcorn, but we’ll have to share because I won’t finish it.”
“Oh, OK. Will cool drinks be cool?” he asks.
She nods and laughs. They get inside the cinema. The room is so dark she does not even search for a seat number. They just sit. Five minutes later…
“We’re in the wrong seat…” he whispers.
“Should we get up and look for our seat number?” she whispers.
“No, we don’t have to.”
The movie starts, and they eat their popcorn and sip on their drinks. He checks up on her and asks if she’s still fine, if she’s enjoying the movie. She gets distracted in parts of the movie, reflecting on how kind he has been throughout the date. No man has ever done this for her before.
Is he gonna ask for a kiss? her heart keeps on asking her brain.
I don’t know, shut up! the brain responds.
It’s getting cold and dark. Thankfully she has her jacket on. They’re on their way to the taxis, talking about how good the movie was. Then she tells him it was her first time in a cinema. He smiles.
“I’ll take the same taxi as you, I want to ensure your safety.”
“That means you’ll pay double. No, you don’t have to, really.”
“Don’t worry,” he says. “You take the ‘Zwide/Veeplaas’ taxi, right?”
“Yes, let’s hurry before the taxi gets full.”
Tell us: What do you think about how their date has gone so far?