(A pic I found on the internet of a car just like Mark's)
Anyway, we'd met at a couple of parties before Christmas and he had kept ringing through the holidays asking for a date. Eventually I rang him and we agreed to go out the following Saturday. He would drive over and pick me up, then we would decide where we wanted to go.
(Did we really communicate using these things?)
The beginning of the date was full of those awkward moments. My first attempt at getting into a sports car was very inelegant. Then Mark suggested that we could go into Oxford and go to a club. I was horrified becuse I knew that my parents would be hysterical if I didn't get home until 2.00 am on a first date! We settled on a few drinks at a quaint old pub by the river Thames. To be honest it was the only pub I knew in the area that wouldn't be full of all my Sixth form friends....
(The Trout at Godstow - still a nice pub for a date!)
This date set plenty of the themes for the 27 years that have followed.. I suppose that I must have talked about my music, my A levels and the people that we both knew. I know that Mark talked - for what seemed like ages - about banger car racing and I didn't understand a word of it! We still go the pub and talk for hours about school and cars. Sometimes I still don't understand what he's talking about if his descriptions get too technical!
I'm glad that we made the effort in the early days - so that we can be where we are now...