Whether single, curious or just plain horny, many people are planning to make the most of life after lockdowns. Are we ready to get up close and personal?
The past year has changed 35-year-old Georgie’s outlook on dating. Several disappointing socially distanced dates and limp text exchanges meant she stopped using dating apps at the beginning of 2021. And now her parents have been vaccinated, she feels confident about returning to physical dates, “but not to the apps”, she says. “As things open up, I’m going to lean into spontaneity; I’m going to say yes to every invitation and seize every opportunity. If I feel a connection with someone at a social gathering, a festival or even a bus stop, I’ll go and talk to them. I’m going to be way more carpe fucking diem about it.”
Liam, 25, lives in Manchester and has never had a serious relationship. He can’t wait to meet people in real life: “If I never have another conversation via Zoom or WhatsApp, I’d be very happy – especially within my love life.” He gave up on dating apps this year and is looking forward to the return of proper flirtation. “Vibing with someone on an app or a screen is not the same as seeing someone across a room and feeling that excitement in your stomach. That’s what I need right now.”
It’s a sentiment echoed by 65-year-old Maggie. After receiving her first Covid vaccine at the end of February, she started spending more time on Hampstead Heath in London with her dog. “I don’t want to have to resort to internet dating, so I’ve just been walking a lot, trying to catch eyes with eligible-looking men,” she says. By the time of her second dose, she hopes to have lined up at least three or four dates. “If this year has taught us anything, it’s that we absolutely must enjoy one another if we can. After everything, how could this not be a summer of love?”