Today is the 25th Anniversary of my first date with Leroy. He surprised me with lunch at the office this afternoon.
We were friends in high school long before he ever asked me out. (Only friends that whole time even though I had a huge crush on him.) When he finally did ask me out it was for dinner and a movie, but he called that morning and cancelled because he was going to be out of town. (I later found out he went to party in San Luis Obispo.) I can't believe I agreed to go a second time, but I did and this time it was to a Halloween party that his brother was hosting in the shop.
My father had not met him and I wasn't sure I was going to be allowed to go. Leroy had to make a good impression, or I wasn't leaving the house. We had decided to go dressed in 50's outfits (poodle skirt and my mom's high school sweater) because it was easy. He showed up with his hair greased back with Vaseline and a pack of cigarettes rolled up in the sleeve of his t-shirt. My hopes of going to the party quickly faded away as he approached the porch. Fortunately for me, Leroy impressed my father with his firm handshake and eye contact.
I don't remember much of the party... other than the fact that I was a big awkward trying to figure out how I was supposed to behave as his "date" instead of just his "friend." It was weird. The most vivid memory of the night was the stroll behind the shop out by the calves. I remember the entire yard cast in orange light from the winery and thinking that it was so cool... but I especially remember the kiss.