1.04.2017

How the Love Story Began

On August 2, 2000 I convinced Geoff to go on a date with me. We had been sort of hanging out off and on for over a week. He was the general manager of the new Lenny's and I was a pool manager at the JCC. I would offer to go pick up lunch (and dinner) at Lenny's and would have to wait for the hot sandwiches to get made. Geoff would often chat with me while I was waiting. Which I now know was completely out of the ordinary for him. 
Anyway, one afternoon, the 2nd, I got tired of all of this little flirting and not getting asked out. I decided to take matters into my own hands. I asked Geoff if he wanted my number. He declined. One of the other guys wanted it. I wasn't giving it to him. So I stormed out. 
Now, this was 2000. I had a cellphone. It was supposed to be for emergencies. This was an emergency. Duh. I stopped in the parking lot and looked at the receipt and called the store. 
"Hello, thank you for calling Lenny's. How may help you?"
"May I speak to Geoff please?"
"Ok" (crashes phone onto nearby surface. 
"This is Geoff."
"This is Rachel. Why didn't you take my number? Do I intimidate you?"
"Uh, no..."
"Are you not at all interested in me?"
"I am. I mean.."
"So then why haven't you asked me out?"
"..."
"Ok, how about this. You come out with me for dinner tonight and if after dinner is over you hate me and never want to see me again, I'll get someone else to get my food and I'll never come in your store again. Ok?"
"I work in a restaurant. I don't really need to eat after."
"Ok, how about coffee?"
"I don't drink coffee"
"Neither do I, it's just something people say!"
"I used we're at an impass."
"Fine, meet me at the JCC and 9:30. I will drive. I am going to eat. You can sit. I will pay. And my offer will still stand at the end. Ok?"
"Ok."

9:30p. I'm off work standing near my car. Waiting. 

9:35. Security guy comes by and says he doesn't want me waiting too much longer since everyone is gone. 

9:40 Security guy says he's staying nearby. 

9:45 Geoff pulls up. He gets in my car. We drive to my mother's house because even though I've showered and done my hair and some make up, I had no clean clothes to wear, so I'm in a suit and shorts and a tank top. He sits on my mother's couch in the living room and talks while I get dressed. 

We go to Belmont Grill on Mendenhall and Poplar. Geoff does not eat, but drinks some pineapple juice. I eat fried mushrooms and a salad. And since the waitress says all the silverware is dirty, I ate the whole thing with my fingers. We walk to Kroger and get some ice cream and sit on the benches and talk and eat ice cream until 2am. I drive him back to his car and go home and wake up my sister to tell her I just went out with the man I'm going to marry. He called his brother and told him the same thing. 

He calls me around 3p that afternoon to ask me out to a movie and dinner the next day. Normally I would've said no. Rules and all. But I accepted. He is the only guy I ever accepted a date from the day before. 
We went to Cafe Espresso in the bottom of Ridgeway Inn and went to see "What Lies Beneath". I don't do scary movies. I ended up completely frightened and in his lap. He showed me his house. We talked. He took me home. 
The next night, we went to Pete and Sam's and got take out and then back to his house and watched a movie. We fell asleep together and woke up in the exact same position. It was the first time in months that either of us had slept through the night. I was supposed to move in to the dorms a couple weeks later. That morning he asked me to move in with him instead. 

Over the next few weeks we spent waaaaay too much time together. I moved in with him and didn't tell anyone. Two days later, my mother told me she had breast cancer again. On the way back to the house we now shared all I could think about was having a baby. I didn't want my mother to die without having been a grandmother. I was 19. When I told Geoff about my mother's cancer, he cried. That night, he asked me to marry him for the first time and I asked him to have a baby. 


We may not have done things in the "correct" order. But that month was definitely the beginning of a great story! 

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