It started with a lunch. Just an innocent lunch. Because… why not? You gotta eat. Neither of us knew if it would lead anywhere and our expectations were low because that’s… well, it’s just safer isn’t it.
Now, before the food has arrived, I’m crushing. I can see us together; there’s real synergy. And this is a grown-up choice too. Nothing toxic about this one – I really think we could last the distance. Like, forever. This is truly romantic.
I tell you that I worry about money. You tell me that you worry about time. We both reveal that we’re feeling a little weird about sex at the moment but we assume that will pass. We don’t so much over-share as gently reveal. And our diaries are out before we’ve paid the bill. We will not say goodbye until we have a solid plan to see each other again. We glow; both of us. This is – for once – entirely reciprocal.
Oh, the allure of the box fresh friendship. The one where you think, “What does she see in me?” The one where you slightly raise your game – funnier, wiser – and yet it doesn’t feel like an effort. It’s as though your best self is being drawn out of you. But it’s not vampiric. It’s nutritious.
Beautiful new friendships do not dawn every day. There are false starts. There are fizzle-outs. But when the chemistry is right they blossom like evergreen cherry trees in your heart. They provide refuge, stimulation, joy unbounded. Just because there’s no sex doesn’t mean there can’t be true love.