I went to a small Catholic college in the middle of nowhere, Pennsylvania. Being that this was a private college, we had to take classes that were called convocation classes. In these classes we would have to attend certain campus activities, complete a certain number of community service hours, and complete weekly reflections in a journal. Most of the events that we would attend were group events such as college soccer games or a speech presented by one of the department heads. We were also allowed to do our community service projects in groups. I chose to be in a group with Tyne and Katie. Shortly after classes began for the semester, I quickly learned how to not go about finding a long lasting relationship.
Tyne and I had one other class together so I had already noticed her and made the simple decision to ask her out. I didn't know a single thing about her but we were in college so what did it matter? Before I really got to know Tyne I would kind of just sit in class and admire her, wishing that I could come up with the courage to ask her on a date.
We were sitting in our convocation class listening to our teacher explain what kind of community service projects would be allowed and that projects could be completed in groups of three. Katie sat to my left and Tyne coincidentally sat directly in front of me so our group basically formed itself. That same day we spent the class discussing what we should do for our service project. Tyne's mother does environmental work for the county that our college was in and was sure she could come up with something for us to do.
After the weekend, our group met in class again and Tyne told Katie and myself that we could do service work for the county by cleaning up river beds and flood zones. From the start I knew that I was going to be stuck doing all the work but I was crushing on Tyne and Katie was pretty cute too.
By this time I was starting to come out of my shell and got more comfortable being around Tyne. I had finally made up my mind as to when I was going to ask her out. However, I still had not worked out how I was going to ask her out let alone what I was going to say. One day after class, it was probably about four weeks into the semester, the group was preparing to meet for our first few hours of community service the next morning. Tyne had told Katie that she would text her the location as they were both from the area and knew it a lot better than I did. I didn't even have a car.
As I tried to figure out how I was even going to make it to the community service location I found myself walking away from the classroom asking Tyne an abundance of questions that had absolutely nothing to do with our project or the class. I was asking her random things like if she knew of any good places to eat or which building she lived in. I think I was just trying to continue talking to her. I was quickly informed that she lived off campus several towns over.
Before I knew it I had followed Tyne to the basement of the building with her walking rather quickly as if she were trying to get away from me. I obviously didn't get the hint. She opened the door to go outside towards the parking lot and in a last ditch effort to hang out with her outside of a school event I asked her if I could get a ride to community service the next morning.
She stopped and just kind of stood there with her back turned to me for a few moments. I did not mind the view so I patiently stood there admiring. She turned around and told me that she had not planned to drive all the way back up the mountain in the morning before our 8 AM meeting. I am pretty sure I gave her a thumbs up and told her I'd see her in the morning. In my mind I was torn between being shot down for a ride and trying to figure out how I actually was going to get to our service project.
Before I had completely gone back inside the building, Tyne told me that she would give me a ride on one condition. Since she was not going to drive all the way back to campus in the morning that left the only option of me spending the night at her house. Is this real life?
After learning she lived in her own house by herself, I grew even more interested in her. She asked me if I wanted to stop and get beer before we get back to her house. I am always up for a few beers and suggested we should pick up some snacks as well. After mutually agreeing on which brand of beer was our favorite, I think we could each feel the mood beginning to lighten. Her house was not big. It was a two-bedroom single family home in the country with cornfields in the backyard and a view of the mountain out front.
We started the evening in her living room on the couch. Both of us were drinking beer a bit more rapidly than we should have but I think we were both nervous. I know I was. She certainly did not know me very well and here I was about to spend the night in her house and then wake up and spend the whole next day together.
The next morning when we woke up, we were next to each other without clothes on. Hoping that she had forgotten what had happened as much as I did, I got out of bed and put my clothes on. The vibe was not particularly awkward but rather light and comical. I guess whatever I did last night satisfied her.
About an hour later we met with Katie to start our service project. Before we arrived I definitely did not think I would spend the rest of the day being asked if I can make the work last longer and being told that I finished too quick.
My relationship with Tyne lasted three grueling years and brought us each our first son. While we are no longer together, I like to believe she cherishes these memories as much as I wish I could forget them.