The Walking Red Flag and I walked down Ocean Avenue holding hands, then down the steep ramp to the Pier and through the amusement park to the ticket booth. I saw on the sign that tickets for the Ferris wheel had gone up from five dollars to eight.
“What a rip-off,” I said, half jokingly, then added, “but it’s worth it.”
In keeping with my standard first-date procedure, I didn’t offer to pay, even though the WRF had picked up our somewhat pricey dinner tab. This time there was a moment of hesitation before he reached for his card again, but reach for it he did. He paid for our tickets and we got in line to ride the Ferris wheel.
I’ll admit this was not the first time I’d suggested the Ferris wheel on a first date. It’s fun, and romantic, and provides an amazing view of the coastline. I’ve had my first kiss from more than one date up there, and when the WRF and I slid into our bucket and he put his arm around me, I thought he would try to kiss me, too, as we rose into the night sky and circled back down again.
I nestled into his shoulder and he held me tight. It felt good, just like it did when he held my hand in his hand. But he didn’t go in for the kiss. He commented on the view and squeezed me close to him, and then, much too soon – as it always is when you take your turn on the Ferris wheel – the ride was over.