I’d Rather Ride Around With You

The notion of going on a “real date” is exciting. We’ve seen them countless times in movies growing up; the guy picks the girl up and takes her on a carefully planned and beautifully executed date that involves dinner, a beautiful view, something completely out of the ordinary, or if she’s lucky, all of the above.
While it’s true that Hollywood sometimes sets very high expectations of what chivalry and romance should be, it would be nice to experience something of that sort. We grow up daydreaming about candlelit dinners and flowers sent to our job and doors opened for us… And with good reason! Don’t we deserve to be wooed?

The arguments with this situation every time it’s brought up is that a) Kuwaiti men aren’t romantic, and b) the ones who are don’t know how to take a woman on a special date because Kuwait makes it difficult to plan these things. These are fair points, but I still believe that a woman deserves to feel butterflies and be treated like a queen, and that a man who wants to win her heart should work with the circumstances he’s faced. Love should never be mediocre or half-assed.

One of the guys I dated made the simplest yet most romantic gestures: writing a love letter just because, and taking me to watch the sunset far away from the hustle and bustle of the city. These were extremely rare occasions, but the fact that he took the time to do something special for me meant the world. There is no greater gift than time.

But recently it feels like almost every date that I’ve been on, or my friends have been on, is a long, aimless drive, listening to music and talking. While I enjoy a long drive every once in a while, doing it every time becomes repetitive and takes all the excitement out of getting dressed for a date and the anticipation of what the evening holds.
Of course, as any woman should, I asked the guy if he has any issues being seen in public with a woman, and the answer was “No, but there’s just no place for us to go”.

Not only does this make us not want to go the extra mile to do nice things for our partner in return, we also eventually lose interest because time spent with our partner becomes predictable. I thought all this “routine” stuff was supposed to happen a couple of years into marriage?

Regardless of how the country/society restricts our romantic ambitions, there is always a loophole. Take her to your favorite hole-in-the-wall restaurant and try new foods together. Go on an early morning jog down the beach and get breakfast afterwards. Take a cooking class together. Go to an art gallery or exhibition. Remember, just as a man wants a woman who can be the wife and the future-mother-of-his-children, a woman wants a man that can be her husband and her best friend. Growing and experiencing things together is what makes a relationship happier and stronger. Surprise her.

What’s the greatest date you’ve ever been on? And if you haven’t had the opportunity, what are the challenges you face when planning a date?

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19 thoughts on “I’d Rather Ride Around With You

  1. Raed says:

    I was lucky that I have met my wife in the airport before we both take off to London on a family vacation. Our first date was there as we both dreamed of (like movies). As soon as we came we went out few times and then we got engaged. I don’t think that there would be an issue if we met here, but meeting outside Kuwait and doing all the fun things together and getting closer (in public) without being worried (what will people say) is a great thing.

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  2. Layla says:

    The greatest date I’ve been on was probably my first ever date. We had coffee first and then spent the evening sitting on the beach. I know, simple but it was just a nice evening out. Later dates have included stuff like go karting, going bowling, lots of lunch and dinner dates, the movies, etc.

    Oddly enough though the one I ended up marrying hasn’t really taken me anywhere.

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    • Thank you for sharing, Layla! I would totally agree: the simplest dates are the best kind. Maybe you can try to convince hubby to do something different? You deserve to be courted, especially by your husband!

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  3. Maha says:

    I grew up in the US. Although I did have my fair share of awkward, mis-planned, and failed dates, I enjoyed some truly spectacular and romantic moments along the way.
    Upon coming to Kuwait for work, I’ve been nervous to start dating. Even if I could find an eligible bachelor, I’d be worried about being seen in public. Kuwait is so tiny! What if we’re seen by a co-worker? A client? A friend’s friend’s nanny’s tutor?
    I find your blog inspiring for this reason. We shouldn’t let what other people say get in the way of us finding love or at least enjoying the company of the opposite sex. However…I wish Kuwait was a bit more open to dating :]

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    • Thank you, Maha! You’re absolutely right. We shouldn’t let what people say get in the way of enjoying a nice evening out with someone we like/love. People are going to talk no matter what you do, so you might as well experience life to it’s fullest!

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  4. Khaled says:

    The issue with dating local girls is that they don’t want to be seen in public due to many reasons which you have touched upon in your other posts. It’s kinda difficult and that what’s makes it a bit boring in kuwait.
    Sometime I wish I can go settle abroad to experience the things you mentioned in your last paragraph.
    Love your writings … Don’t stop 🙂

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    • Thank you for your comment! I believe the change begins with us. If like-minded individuals can slowly break the social norms that hinder us from enjoying a healthy relationship, who knows what kind of a great impact we’ll have! Go for it!

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  5. em says:

    I was talking to my boyfriend only yesterday of things to do, and he told me, even for the man it is boring/tiresome to just drive around. I do wish we had a little place you call your “own” where one can really unwind..plan a nice dinner, cook something together, basically explore things to do when one is comfortable in their own skin. That however lacks in Kuwait, and he jokingly said lets get married to have our own place, and we laughed it out at the moment. However, I find this the case with many of my Kuwaiti friends (women mostly), that I just want to get married so that “I can start my life”, ” travel”, “live by myself” and “do what i please”… which is a weird concept to me as this is not how youth is supposed to think of marriages. They get married for the wrong reasons and then when they live together some of them don’t even know basic household matters as they never lived independently. Sorry to have deviated and let out my frustrations..So the best date… for me the best date had been this one particular day we were travelling from place to place. So when we arrived our destination, we quickly went to the supermarket to get some refreshments. Whilst I freshened up, Le boyfriend, took to soothing up the place with candles and had a cute picnic ready with drinks and snacks right in the bedroom. I mean it was so simple yet the effort put besides being tired is what counted for me I guess. I was knacknered and no way I would have done that for my significant other 😛 but at that moment I realised he’s a keeper.

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    • My ex and I used to talk of getting a “chill-out pad” where we could just hang out and watch movies and cook and unwind. Anything but driving around!

      Your date sounds wonderful. Impromptu picnics are the best! You’ve got yourself a keeper, Masha’Allah! Hold tight! And thanks for sharing!

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  6. Ali says:

    I agree with Khaled, the close-mindedness of the society makes the dating scene harder. My best experience? Probably that time I took a girl to Entertainment City and spent all afternoon there. It was almost empty (about 8 other people were there, in the entire amusement park) so we had some privacy while still being able to enjoy the day.

    I love your blog, I relate to a lot of the content here and would actually like to share some of my ideologies and experiences if they would be beneficial to your blog. If they are, let me know.

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    • Your date sounds wonderful! Nothing better than feeling like a kid in more ways than one!

      Feel free to share as many thoughts! It’s an open forum! Thank you for sharing your experiences and your kind words!

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  7. There is actually a lot to do in Kuwait.

    Dancing classes for you and your mate. Don’t care about others, this is a good way to spend time together, some form of exercise and boy oh boy a good activity to build your relationship. Trust in the form of leading and follow.

    There is also walks on the beach, privacy on the shores towards the north where you won’t find anyone. Just go and enjoy some time together. There are culinary classes, events and so many other things but I need to remember them.

    Me, my favourite date was when I went to meet my fiancé in Morocco. It was special as we spent time together where I cooked for her, massaged her body from head to toe and it was a date that lasted for 2 days. The feeling was like we’re on a honeymoon but unmarried yet, petals on the ground, candle lights in the bedroom, food cooked well on the table and a man who was ready to slow dance the night away. We rented a chalet and there was no worries in sight. However, everything must come to an end as after the 2 days, it was time to meet the parents and to end the story, we didn’t get married. Unlucky me, but surely there is a lady out there who deserves a good man like me.

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    • Thank you for your suggestions and sharing your experience! I’m sorry it didn’t work out, but everything happens for a reason! Your date sounded wonderful and I truly hope you find the woman of your dreams! Good luck!

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  8. Samira says:

    my best favorite date of all times was my first and believe it or not we went to the Kuwait Entertainment city. we planned the usual aka having dinner and going to the movies but somehow we ended up in KEC. it was fun, i felt safe and not worried about anything when im with him. Unfortunately our relationship did not work out and strangely whenever i date someone i do the comparison, which is bad i know but it is out my hand. He was good bs qadar allah ma sha2 fa3al ^^

    I love your blog, i mean you are literally talking about me and the story of my life. God bless you and thanks for inspiring me ^^

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    • Thank you, sweetheart! :* Your date sounds awesome. It’s hard not to compare, especially when you’ve had it so good. Remind yourself that everyone has something special to give to you, and you’ll see that they’re not all bad!

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