Dave Mortensen quickly found the way to my heart when he brought me pink star gazer lilies. I, like most women, am a sucker for flowers. How can you not feel happier when you have a bright and cheery looking flower sitting on your kitchen island? The perfect start to the date soon found it’s bumps in the road, as we missed our exit in Scottsdale. Cool as a cucumber, Dave assured me he didn’t need the GPS, despite being from Utah and not being very familiar with the area. He’d already scoped out the area earlier in the day (such a sweet gesture! In fact, several of my dates have done this), so he felt sure he could get us back on track. I was impressed by his composure.
The plan was to go to the riverwalk area of Scottsdale where they have an Art Walk that is supposed to include vendors setup on the bridge on Thursday nights. For some reason, the bridge was empty. Still unflinching, Dave led me to stroll down the streets of Old Town Scottsdale, walking past interesting flower shops, art shops, and even wig shops. This is a great area of the Phoenix valley and I really haven’t spent much time in it. It was a warm summer evening but Dave did not complain. He stayed fully engaged in conversation with me. Dave’s calm and easy going nature was rubbing right off on me. I felt relaxed and unconcerned with any plans. I just focused on Dave and getting to know him.
Dave had made a reservation at Tapas Papa Frita, a restaurant right in the area that I had never been to. He’d found it through careful research online. Upon walking in I instantly knew that I was in for a dining experience! This is where things got back on track and everything was going right. The server, Nicholas, was personable and obviously knowledgeable. Rather than us ordering from the menu, Dave requested that Nicholas order for us – to give us his favorites. I loved his willingness to entrust our dinner to the expert. For the next hour we were showered with 7 different plates of amazing food – eggplant lasagna, ox tail, calamari, fancy things that I can’t even remember how to say. It was a delightful culinary experience.
The owner of the restaurant, Joseph, a true Spaniard, came to check on us. He then apologized that the Flamenco dancers who normally perform on Thursday were currently in Spain. I looked at Dave and gave him a knowing look. Wow, another part of his masterful plan had fallen through, but he had made no mention of it. Because Dave had just rolled with the punches I never felt concerned. We just enjoyed our time, conversing, swapping suggestions for teaching Gospel Doctrine (we were both recently called to that position in our wards), and eating some great food.
On our way back to the car, we paused to look out over the bridge. Dave had some pennies so we chose to do the quintessential wish on the penny and toss it in the river. However Dave did want to just toss them in, we needed to flip the coin. Well, somehow I made it through 27 years without learning how to really flip a coin. So he patiently tried to teach me. Can’t say that I did it right, but I gave it a try.
Tonight really was great. The date just felt so classic – like what every girl is told about when she’s little and when she’s in Young Women’s. The guy arrives on time, brings you beautiful flowers, opens your door, has a wonderful evening planned, never makes you worry about any amount of money that is spent, because you are a queen for the night and no expense should be spared. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t expect that for every date, by any means. But it is the quintessential, “perfect” date. And Dave came through looking like a champ.
Dave is such an interesting person, someone who works full time in software and then dedicates many of his evenings to a theater production company. He obviously knows how to prioritize and accomplish a lot – qualities that I certainly admire. But at the same time, he knows how to enjoy the ride. I think Dave has life pretty well figured out. Was it a love connection between the two of us? It’s hard to say actually. I really enjoyed my time with Dave and can see potential. So I guess time will tell.