That next semester - the Spring of 1999 (January - May) - was the best 5 months of my life up until that point. I had more dates in those 5 months than I had in the 3 years previous to it. In high school, I was not what you call popular. I had my friends and I guess a lot of people knew who I was, but not because they liked me or wanted to be my friend. I was just kind of in the middle somewhere, not cool, but not a total nerd. I tell you that because that semester in college, I was the "It" girl. I remember meeting a couple of girls for the first time and they said to me: "Oh, your the cute girl at the Institute!" I was in heaven.
It was during this time that Randal (or Randy, as he was known back then) decided to pursue me. He tells me that of my group of friends, he was not initially attracted to me, but because of my popularity I became a conquest. That cracks me up. He was always a big flirt, but I didn't pay him much attention because he was younger than I was. Yes, yes, he's only like 3 months younger than me, but I had spent my last year of high school finishing up my last credit and half through correspondence classes and attending college - so I felt older. And I had begun dating returned missionaries - a huge step in a girls life! It is kind of a rite a womanhood. Anyway, needless to say he had not served a mission yet, and so was not a returned missionary. But I appreciated his flirting, it always made me feel good about myself. In fact, that little thing about him would be one of the driving forces behind us getting to the "courting" stage.
I was going to get out my journal and take little excerpts from it about this time. I said some pretty cute things about him. But, alas, I cannot find it. At one point, I numbered my journals and all I can find now are numbers 2, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, & 13. It was sometime in journals 7 or 8 that I met and first started getting to know Randal. Well, it's bound to turn up at some point. I do remember in particular one entry.
At the time I was interested in another guy. Let's call him Marc. I really like this guy, and I knew he liked me too. We would flirt all the time, and in our little group of friends, we always ended up as a couple. (As there were 6 of us, and the other four were already all paired off.) Cool, right? Not really. You see Marc had a girlfriend. One he had been dating since high school. But she was NEVER around. She worked on weekends and after her classes almost everyday. It was kind of annoying. So, finally, one Sunday night, our group was going to go to the Mesa Temple. Cause that's what young single adult mormons did on Sunday night. We would go to the temple and meet up with other young single adult mormons. That particular night I met Marc's dear little girlfriend for the first time. I was devastated. She was a ditto image of Audrey Hepburn.
While I was sitting there sulking, who should find me? Randal, of course! He proceeded to put his arm around me and guide me away from my group of friends. We walked around for a few minutes and he asked me what was wrong. I told him vaguely what was going on and he guessed it was all about Marc. He was so sweet, telling me how I deserve someone better, someone who is strong and and a leader - who is smart and so on and so on. Someone just like him! Yeah, he was kind of cocky. He did tell me how impressed he was with me. He told me how smart and beautiful and worth so much more than that that I was. He said that if he were a returned missionary, he would totally be dating me with the intention of marriage. It was all very flattering and at the time it was kind of funny too. None the less, I went home that night and wrote about in y journal. I concluded it with: "Whoever marries that Randy will sure be a lucky girl." (Or something similar.) Little did I know...
Another Randy run in was a little later and also involved Marc. I was sitting in the lobby of the Institute building, talking to a guy and trying to "get my game on" when who should walk through the front doors, but Marc. Little stinker. He and this other guy proceeded to have a "whose is better?" match. You know the type. It goes down something like this:
Guy #1 - Well I drive a newer car.Guy #2 - Well I don't live with my parents anymore.Guy #1 - I could kick your butt at pool.Guy #2 - I could just kick your buttAnd so on...
Well, I was getting pretty fed up with it, and then it happened. Randy walked through the lobby! So, I said right then and there, "Neither one of you have a chance. I'm waiting for Randy to get home from his mission." Randal, being the HUGE flirt that he is, proceeded to come over, get down on knee, and start spouting sonnets to me. It was surreal. And one of my prouder moments, having 3 different guys vying for my attention at the same time.
I don't remember very more interactions with Randal during the next year and half. He asked me out once, but I couldn't go... I had to stay late in the dark room for a big photography project. During one Institute activity, a movie, he sat behind me a rubbed my back for most of the movie - tried to cuddle with me and hold me hand and the likes. I made a quick escape, hoping to avoid the rumors that I knew would come of such actions. Another time, we were passing each other in a hallway - me on my way to play volleyball, and I think he was on his way to play pool or ping pong - when he stopped me for a hug, but the player that he was decided he wanted more and swooped in, stealing a kiss. It seemed he was always doing silly things like that. I'm pretty sure after that semester though that I didn't really see him except for passing each other here and there (sans kisses) until the beginning of October 2000.
(PS - I tried to find some pictures of us during that time... Blech. I will not torture you with that. Or give you fuel for the "blackmail Charmaine" fire.)