(read pt. 1 here)
My family and I were driving to the Samford's house for supper, where we would meet the guests. I'd taken time to freshen up and try to look somewhat cute, because seriously peoples, let me tell you that having any visitors was a huge deal. These were our first to have in our time in Iringa, so I was excited. Were they going to be fun, uptight, friendly?
We walked in, and everyone started meeting each other. To make sure I didn't appear too eager, I set down the food we brought, then made my way over. Everyone shuffled around, taking turns shaking hands; they were polite and nice, and you could tell immediately that they were just great people. Alex and I reached across and shook hands - "Hi, I'm Alex", "...Lindsey, hi!". Everyone makes a first impression; Our brain gathers bits of info while we're not even realizing it. Mine went "boop beep boop boop. hands that are used to work. beep boop. eyes: brown. beep beep. eyes: brown. beep. eyes:brown. beep boop."
Even though I wasn't going to be at all dumb about Alex, since people thought that we'd go well together, I couldn't help but watch him some and see what the person was like. Out of curiosity!
He kept mostly to himself, and hardly said a word. He seemed to be more interested in his food than in the conversation around him. Occasionally he'd look up and glance around, then return back to quietly munching his food. His two brothers were talkative and hilarious, and it was easy to talk to them. Somehow though, Alex's silence didn't come across as rude or stuck up, but just what it was - silence. He did make a short comment or two throughout the evening, and when he did, "boop beep boop. voice much is deeper than expected. beep beep."
The next morning, my brothers and I walked over to the Samfords to see what was up, and we all headed out for a walk around our neighborhood. Jake grabbed a soccer ball because the kids wanted to play at a nearby field. Alex and I ended up walking sortof by each other, though we were on opposite sides of the road. Within a few minutes of this picture being taken, an old lady walked by us, and she and I greeted each other. Aubrie Samford loved riding on Alex's shoulders, and you can see her riding there in the picture. After the old woman passed by Aubrie said, "Aunt Linz! She probably thinks you and Alex are married!". "Aaaargh, Aubrie! He's already not talking to me, don't say that!!!" I thought. Instead, I awkwardly said, "Heh heh, you're siiiiilly."
I did quite a bit of the talking, because it felt awkward to just walk along in silence. I thought he didn't like me. Not just "like like" me, but I thought he just plain ol' didn't like me. Ya see, by this time I'd seen enough of him through facebook and such to know that he was normally be perkier. Do you know how a guy acts when he's making it clear he doesn't like you, but at the same time is being the perfect gentleman? I don't want to make it out to sound like he was being awful and rude, because he wasn't. Ox was always polite and gentlemanly!
And I liked this guy. He was most concerned about being prepared for the classes he was teaching than anything else. We would be playing games and he would be preparing for his lessons. As the days went on, when he would open up just a bit, I saw that he was hilarious. And in comes the trying not to laugh too much at his hilarity so he wouldn't be able to tell that I liked him. I was still determined that I would not be dumb about the whole thing.
Apparently, about this time Alex's resolve was crumbling. :)
One night we went to play football, and I went along to play, because that's what I would've done normally. It was fun, and we decided to play again the next night. My Dad, our translator, and Alex were on a study, so were going to be there a little late. They pulled up, and ran over to where we were, except no Alex. I brain started whirring at high speed. "Huh? I know he doesn't like me, but he doesn't have to not come just because I'm here! I know how much he likes sports, and he would be here. I can't believe that! I've been staying out of the way! Is he so offended by my presence??"...right at that moment he steps out from behind the car - he had been changing his shoes! "Oh....okay."
What I didn't know at this time, was that Anthony and Andrew were trying to convince Alex to just talking to me some. "Just talk to her some, you never know!"...
I guess it worked, because a few days before they left we'd talk some. A success! We spoke! Heh heh.
The day before they left, we took them on a safari, and we happened to sit by each other.
I had never met a guy like him and thought he was awesome in every way. That feeling is a million times stronger now; I thank God every day for Alex. I believe with all my heart that God worked to put us together, and I am so humbled and thankful for that.