Memory Monday ~ My First Date

Retired Not Tired Memory Monday

I could post about the weekend, and how I attended two birthday parties in two days, but, today, I’m joining Judy @ Retired-Not-Tired for ‘Memory Monday’.  Today’s prompt is my first date! Man, this post takes me w-a-y back….

It was the summer of 1968, and I was about to enter the ninth grade.  I was almost fourteen, and up to this point, I had been admiring boys from afar.  Little did I know that all of that was about to change!

I’m not sure exactly how I met Gene, but I believe it was through a mutual friend, who was nick-named ‘Bud’.  However, once Gene and I met, it wasn’t long before he began calling me on the phone. We talked a few times, and Gene finally asked if he could come over to my house. Gene was sixteen, and actually had a driver’s license!

After much begging and pleading, on my part, my parents reluctantly agreed to allow Gene to come over to my house to visit me.  Gene and I spent the rest of the summer of ’68 sitting around my house, on the weekends, watching television or playing monopoly.  Gene was always a gentleman.  The perfect first boyfriend.

By the end of the summer, I’d turned fourteen, and Gene and I began asking my parents if we could ride around in his car.  At first, they resisted, but, one day, they finally agreed to let Gene drive me over to my grandmother’s house.  They followed behind us in their car!  I’ve always considered that ride with Gene as ‘my first date’, since it was the first time I was ever alone in a car with a boy.

You see, in our little town, there was nothing to do on a date.  (There still isn’t!)  Back then, dating someone usually consisted of riding up and down ‘the strip’, from the Dairy Queen to a restaurant called The 301 Drive In, or sitting and watching others drive back and forth.  Gene and I probably rode ‘the strip’ a few times,  however our courtship was to be short-lived.

Believe it or not, it turned out there was a long-running family feud, of some sort, between Gene’s family and my paternal grandparent’s family. Shortly after the end of the summer, my parents said Gene and I would need to stop seeing each other, before my grandmother found out and “had a hissy fit” (their exact words). They didn’t give me a time frame, just told me I had to break things off because there was no future in the relationship. (By the way, the grandmother, who didn’t like Gene’s family, was not the same grandmother Gene and I drove to visit.)

It was difficult, but, eventually, I got up my nerve and tearfully told Gene I couldn’t see him anymore, without actually telling him why.  It was awful, made more difficult by the fact that Gene had recently given me a lovely wrist watch for my birthday.  (I gave the watch back to him when I told him I couldn’t see him anymore.)

I have to say, Gene didn’t give up easily, and continued to call me, off and on, for almost two years!  Every time I’d have a break up with a boyfriend, Gene would  find out, and call me.  Gene was my shoulder to cry on, in between boyfriends. Each time, he would ask me to go out with him again, but I never did.

Gene finally stopped calling, once I began dating Ed, but I’ve never forgotten him.  Years ago, I heard Gene had suffered a heart attack, but that he’d survived and was doing okay.  I never heard anything else. I hope Gene has had a long, full, happy life, because he deserved it.  He was a good guy, just not the right guy for me.


Published in: on October 27, 2014 at 7:23 am  Comments (7)  
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7 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Bitter sweet story!!! It’s nice to know that in a certain sense you two remained friends and he was a supportive kind.

  2. Wow! Families can be so hard on boyfriends can’t they.

  3. Oh, that is sad. I hope for Gene that he had a happy life too. He really liked you.

  4. Wow. I wonder if I would have stopped dating a boy because of that. I guess I would have if he wasn’t Mr. Right. 🙂 Great story! Glad you held out for Ed!

  5. Ohhh, so Romeo and Juliet!! I was actually hoping that you would get back together — but then I guess that would not make a good story for Ed then! I stopped dating a boy who was Portuguese once because his mama wanted him to marry someone who was also Portuguese. She was always perfectly lovely to me, not rude about it: it’s just how she felt. He and I turned out to be better friends anyway.

  6. It was wise of ‘Juliet’ not to have told her ‘Romeo’ the reason why she couldn’t see him. 🙂

  7. What a sweet memory! Not too many first dates and first boyfriends are so great. I’m glad Gene was such a nice guy!

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