Shota and Emilie

An egg-cellent Lawn date

Shota and Emilie met on Wednesday at 5:00 p.m. and went to Lemongrass.

Shota: I signed up for Love Connection because the former executive editor of The Cavalier Daily encouraged me to. I also have had a couple friends do it before. It sounded like a cool experience and it’s the time in my U.Va. career where I’m looking for exciting things to do. I was excited when I was chosen because it’s something I haven’t done before — I’m always down to meet new people.

Emilie: I’ve always enjoyed reading Love Connections in the past and joked about doing it before. In a moment of spontaneity, I did the application and sent it in because I’m graduating in May and thought this was the last chance to make it happen. I had honestly forgotten I had submitted it!

Shota: I haven’t been on a blind date before so I had zero expectations. I do have the confidence to connect with most people, so I wasn’t too concerned either. I’m a pretty easygoing guy.

Emilie: When I found out I was chosen, I kept it to myself and didn’t tell anyone because I think it would be better for it to come out in the paper so my friends would be surprised. I have never been on a blind date before, so my expectations came from having read Love Connections.

Shota: I located the meeting spot and saw two benches — one with a guy and one with a girl. I talked to the girl and asked if she was here for Cavalier Daily and she was. She seemed really nice and was definitely really pretty. She seemed a bit quiet but sociable and was definitely really pleasant.

Emilie: I got there a bit early and was waiting which wasn’t bad because it was a beautiful day out. Every person walking by led to me trying to figure out if they were my date or not. One guy sat on the bench and I thought it was him but he started falling asleep. Shota came right on time, and I think the first thing he said was, “Hi I’m Shota, and I’m wearing mismatched shoes and carrying a sock because I’m playing assassin with the UGuides.” I definitely appreciate people who are quirky and doing things out of the ordinary.

Shota: We decided to eat at Lemongrass because she lives on JPA and doesn’t eat on the Corner a lot, so I suggested we eat somewhere she hasn’t been before. Before we went to Lemongrass, we hung out in my Lawn room for a while.

Emilie: We decided to hang out on the Lawn because the weather was really nice. I had never been in a Lawn room before so I was asking about the firewood and stuff. He suggested that we make a fire, so we chopped wood and built a fire in his lawn room. He talked about how he sometimes cooks things over the fire, so we ended up frying eggs and enjoying some world class fried eggs. We decided to go eat at Lemongrass, and he asked if I had any dietary restrictions, which is very considerate because I do.

Shota: I thought the conversation was pretty balanced and not awkward. Her gap year was super cool, and there were aspects of her life that were really intriguing. She’s a Christian from Boston, lives on JPA with like seven of her friends and enjoys running, baking and cooking. I really enjoyed learning about her and her perspectives. Life is all about meeting people who are different.

Emilie: I think the conversation was pretty balanced — he was good at keeping it going. When I first meet people, I can be quieter than I am in reality. By the time we got to dinner it felt very natural. We talked about travelling and how we both have studied some different languages. I study GDS, and he’s BME. So, it was cool comparing majors and hobbies.

Shota: There was very little flirting — more of a friend vibe. Perhaps, the greatest single philosophical consensus of our generation is that we don’t really know when a hangout is a date or not. I can definitely see myself hanging out with her again. She was really nice and interesting and had a lot of subjects she was passionate about. Sometimes at U.Va., there is a stultifying saneness that rewards conformity, but she was a special type of person who I had never really hung out with before. I’m really glad I met her.

Emilie: He pretty directly asked about my relationship history, which I thought was a bold move, but I respected that and thought it was straight to the point. He gave me some really good advice, which was unexpected. I am not one to flirt, so I don’t think I was giving off flirting vibes. There was definitely a friend vibe.

Shota: I paid and walked her home to JPA. I got her number, and she said she would bring me baked goods — I’m really looking forward to it.

Emilie: He paid, which was very nice of him. He also offered to walk me home, which is very kind because he lives on the Lawn and I live on JPA. We walked back and ended up having this deep conversation about faith and how it impacts our life. We exchanged numbers and agreed to hang out. Now that I know someone who lives on the Lawn, I will definitely come hang out there again. By the end of the date, I kind of forgot we were on a set-up date for the newspaper.

Shota: I’ll give it an 8.

Emilie: I think I would give it a solid 9. It was one of the more fun dates I’ve gone on because it was different (you don’t normally cook eggs over the fire). I thought we connected well. 

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