Mystery Date
by Dave

Couple Enjoying the Sunset on their Mystery Date
Ok, so this date idea doesn’t really have anything to do with solving a mystery, it’s more about providing your date with a fun and unique path to find you. In essence, you will creatively lead them to a few items that hint at what you will be doing that evening, with a bottle of wine and dessert, before they find you to enjoy the sunset together. This is one of those dates that can be very basic or over-the-top, it depends on what feels right for you and your relationship. Feel free to take or leave any pieces, and add your own.

The Setup
This is where you provide maps for your date so they won’t get lost. First you need to think of a nice, scenic place, like the beach or a hillside, where you can put down a blanket and watch the sunset. After that, find a local wine store and dessert shop that are not too far away from where you’ll be spending the evening. Call the wine store and explain to the manager that you’d like to buy a bottle of wine and leave it, along with a card, for someone to pick up (on your date day) and you wanted to make sure that was ok. Do the same for the dessert shop, and don’t forget to make sure they’ll both be open when your date goes by. Write down the addresses of these shops. Now you have everything you need for the maps:

  1. Go to Google Maps, type the address of the wine shop into the box and click the "Search Maps" button. When the map comes up, click the "Link" link above the upper right corner of the map, highlight the text in the "Paste link in email or IM", then right-click and select "Copy". Paste it into a Word document, email it to yourself, or save it some other way. This is the link you will email to your date along with the street address. 1/3 done!
  2. On the same page, click "Get Directions" under the Google logo. Type the address of the wine store in the start (top) box and the address of dessert shop in the end (bottom) box and click the "Get Directions" button. When the map comes up, click the "Print" link above the upper right corner of the map to open the Print window. At the top of the page, check "Include large map" and then rollover the destination address (last in the numbered list) at the bottom and select "Map" (next to Text only). Print. 2/3 done!
  3. Close the print window and enter the address of the dessert shop in the box to the RIGHT of the Google logo, click the "Search Maps" button. This gives your date the start point from the dessert shop to the final stop. Now you will locate the final destination on the map. Do this by clicking and dragging the map, zooming in or out, and using the satellite or map buttons to spot landmarks. When you find the spot on the map, RIGHT-click it and select "Get directions to here". Print out the directions as you did in the last step. If your final destination is far away from the road, be sure to circle it on your printed map. Done!

Ok, that seemed more complicated than it is, but printing the maps will really only take a few minutes.

Fold up the directions from the wine store to the dessert shop and place them in an envelope along with a note listing only the address of the dessert shop and a message like "Something will be waiting for you". It’s also nice to include a personal note like "P.S. I can’t wait to see you," "P.S. You are so beautiful (or handsome)," or "Ready to have fun?" Do the same for the envelope you’ll be leaving at the dessert shop. That’s it, the preparations are done.

The Date
The day of the date, stop by the dessert shop and select something sweet for later, maybe a piece of cake to share or even two. Pay for the dessert, have them put it in a box and leave the envelope, making sure they understand your directions, ie "Give to a guy named Mike when he asks". Do the same for the wine store.

Email your date with the Google map link, address, and a note that says something like “Be here at 6:30pm, there will be something waiting for you.” If you want them to get there at a certain time, say 30 minutes before sunset, make sure you add in some drive-time.
Head to the location with your blanket, wine glasses, and a light dinner or anything else you want to bring. Make sure you each have phones in case your date gets lost.

Suggestions
Guys can make it even more romantic by including a poem with each note. It’s one of those times where expressing your emotions and showing a little extra thought can go a long way toward winning a girl over. A word of caution though, if you haven’t been dating long, you may want to stick with a personal thought like "I’ll see you soon" instead of the full-blown love poem. You know your relationship better than I, but in my experience poetry before it’s time can have the opposite effect. Here are a few examples that are short and sweet, but there are tons of love poems online, search until you find the right ones:

La Vita Nuova by Dante Aligheiri
In that book which is
My memory . . .
On the first page
That is the chapter when
I first met you
Appear the words . . .
Here begins a new life

I Would Live in Your Love by Sara Teasdale
I would live in your love as the sea-grasses live in the sea,
Borne up by each wave as it passes, drawn down by each wave that
recedes;
I would empty my soul of the dreams that have gathered in me,
I would beat with your heart as it beats, I would follow your soul
as it leads.

To a Young Lady by William Cowper
Sweet stream that winds through yonder glade,
Apt emblem of a virtuous maid—
Silent and chaste she steals along,
Far from the world's gay busy throng:
With gentle yet prevailing force,
Intent upon her destined course;
Graceful and useful all she does,
Blessing and blest where'er she goes;
Pure-bosom'd as that watery glass,
And Heaven reflected in her face.

Variations
These can be handled exactly the same as the Mystery Sunset date, but might be more fun for you:

  • Have your date pick up marshmallows and wine before leading them to the beach where you’re waiting with a fire.
  • Have your date pick up candles and massage oil before sending them over to your place for a massage.

Take a look at our Treasure Hunt for similar date ideas!

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