Pretty much everyone has dating fatigue at this point, but what inevitably happens when the entire population of young people is confined to their houses thanks to COVID-19? They get horny and bored, then horny and then bored again. You get the picture. All this to say, even the most stable and passionate relationships need a little extra spark right now, so here are a few date ideas to rekindle the fire and find love in a pandemic.
- Host a movie day. I know this sounds a bit basic, but let me set the scene. This is a day-long activity. You’re both in sweats. You rented a projector and a Disney film from the ’90s. It’s raining outside. You baked cookies using your grandma’s recipe and actually let the butter soften to cream the sugar with. No one is in a hurry. Popcorn abounds – both sweet and salty, depending on how controversial your partner is feeling. Take-out containers on the table. No dishes. Intrigued yet?
- Walk the public parks/gardens. You’d be surprised by how many of these are still open in COVID times. They’re categorically gorgeous and it transforms your daily stroll into something truly memorable. It’s not rocket science; in fact, it’s overthinking-proof. You can have a simple, stress-free day in Central Park or your local equivalent with an ice cream. Or, you can people-watch on a bench or in the grass where you can grab a free spot. Fresh air and enrichment: the perfect combination. Just sit back and smell the roses.
- Have a picnic on the roof. This is another one that explains itself. A word of caution, though: even if you don’t think you need them, bring blankets. You’ll thank me later. Bring candles and sparkly lights if you’re feeling that aesthetic and settle down into your nest. Huddle together for warmth and embrace that human contact. However, if you start to feel like a penguin on the outside of the huddle in a nature documentary, it’s time to ask for his jacket. Fellas, don’t make a fuss – you know you love it.
- Host karaoke night in the garden. Okay, I’m a simple woman with few principles. One of them is that most problems in daily life can be resolved by dancing around singing ABBA at the top of your lungs. Prove me wrong. This is a situation that also generally involves sequins or some sort of equally tasteful flared trouser suit. For all involved. It’s the perfect way to loosen up and relax – how long has it been since you could shout at the top of your lungs without any repercussions? That feeling is something that Hugo Boss needs to bottle.
- Walk somewhere with no destination in mind. I know it sounds like a suggestion your grandmother would make on a Sunday morning when you’re about to visit a historic site or beauty spot with your granola bar and comfy shoes, but don’t you just miss that right now? The best dates don’t need to break the bank. Wouldn’t you give anything to get those wholesome memories back? They don’t have to just be things of the past – you can still hang out with your partner in ways that might not seem super sexy on the surface. But this is such an intimate, gentle way of being with the person you love. What’s not to enjoy?
- Hike somewhere new at sunrise. This might sound like the same thing again, it’s really not. You can commit to going further, to reaching a peak, so seeing so many new things. The quiet that comes with watching the sun set is unparalleled. You can also show them your favorite paths and show off that summer tan that none of us have yet…
- Game night. All you need is a deck of cards and some vodka. Oh, you thought I was going to suggest a game night without strip poker? Interesting. Well, in fairness, any game night worth its salt starts in the lull straight after a meal and ends in the early hours of the morning, covered in glory and not much else. Sound interesting yet?
- Do a TikTok challenge. Don’t look at me like that, YOU wanted something different to do. If you’re feeling self-conscious, maybe take a shot before you get started, but believe me, these are fun. Don’t take yourself too seriously and prepare to be humbled in ways you never imagined when you try to learn a dance. If your partner sticks around after seeing the current state of your hip mobility, then at least you know you’ve got a keeper. If you’re feeling lazy, you can even let your zodiac choose your date for you! You can get to know each other with icebreaker challenges or wholesome arts and crafts, or frown while you try the latest pasta recipe that the internet made you try. You can then share a rueful grin when it inevitably turns out to be fire.
So there you have it, a few options to get the ball rolling when it feels like decades since you went on a date. We will get back to normality eventually, but for now, try Lizzo’s ‘nature’s cereal’ with your partner… and relax.