Blind date: ‘My shirt went straight in the wash when I got home’

<span>Photograph: Peter Flude/The Guardian</span>
Photograph: Peter Flude/The Guardian

Anona on Nadeem

What were you hoping for?
That he could make me laugh, had hair and wouldn’t bore the pants off me.

First impressions?
He got up excitedly and gave me a warm embrace the moment I walked through the door … I could have been meeting someone else! Confident, chatty, jokey.

What did you talk about?
Our kids. Physics. Writing. Farsi. Mathematics. South America. Argentinian malbec. South Africa. Botswana. Wildlife. Cooking. Living by the sea. Oh, and how great the hotel manager was.

Most awkward moment?
When he told our dinner neighbours we were on a Guardian blind date – swallow me under the table. But then they probably knew as they were clearly listening to every word and not speaking to each other.

Good table manners?
Impeccable, although I don’t mind a little accidental slippage.

Best thing about Nadeem?
He’s a dedicated dad and he made me laugh. Bright, although Argentinian malbec seemed to be a revelation to him.

Would you introduce Nadeem to your friends?
Why ever not? He can make them all laugh.

Describe Nadeem in three words
Funny, intelligent, chatty.

Blind date is Saturday’s dating column: every week, two strangers are paired up for dinner and drinks, and then spill the beans to us, answering a set of questions. This runs, with a photograph we take of each dater before the date, in Saturday magazine (in the UK) and online at every Saturday. It’s been running since 2009 – you can read all about how we put it together here.

What questions will I be asked?
We ask about age, location, occupation, hobbies, interests and the type of person you are looking to meet. If you do not think these questions cover everything you would like to know, tell us what’s on your mind.

Can I choose who I match with?
No, it’s a blind date! But we do ask you a bit about your interests, preferences, etc – the more you tell us, the better the match is likely to be.

Can I pick the photograph?
No, but don't worry: we'll choose the nicest ones.

What personal details will appear?
Your first name, job and age.

How should I answer?
Honestly but respectfully. Be mindful of how it will read to your date, and that Blind date reaches a large audience, in print and online.

Will I see the other person’s answers?
No. We may edit yours and theirs for a range of reasons, including length, and we may ask you for more details.

Will you find me The One?
We’ll try! Marriage! Babies!

Can I do it in my home town?
Only if it’s in the UK. Many of our applicants live in London, but we would love to hear from people living elsewhere.

How to apply

What do you think Nadeem made of you?
He told me: great company and adventurous.

Did you go on somewhere?
To the couch in the bar, for a pot of tea.

And … did you kiss?
Goodness, this was a first date. What a question! I don’t think I felt a romantic connection, but I had a great time. We exchanged numbers – the first time he mis-typed my number and messaged someone else.

If you could change one thing about the evening, what would it be?
Not to slosh wine on the white linen tablecloth with an overanimated gesture, then have an in-depth, slightly giddy conversation with the manager about stain removal.

Marks out of 10?
8. Never, ever give anyone a 10. You’d have to be dating Thor.

Would you meet again?
Yes as friends. And then who knows?

Nadeem on Anona

What were you hoping for?
To meet someone engaging, funny and attractive.

First impressions?
I think all three of the above were achieved.

What did you talk about?
Lamb v beef. Wine (malbec was quite a discussion topic). Table manners (and me risking a crisp, white shirt with french onion soup). Living abroad and coming home to the UK. How proud we are of our kids.

Most awkward moment?
None, Anona was easygoing. It was a very pleasant evening.

Good table manners?
Hers, yes indeed. Mine? My shirt went straight into the wash when I got home.

Best thing about Anona?
Her sparkling charm.

Would you introduce Anona to your friends?
I think they would be intrigued by her.

Describe Anona in three words
Beautiful, clever and a great conversationalist.

Related: Blind date in Sydney: ‘Tall, good-looking, shirt decidedly unbuttoned – my doubts vanished’

What do you think Anona made of you?
I was too busy having a nice time to ponder that question.

Did you go on somewhere?
No, it was late, and Poole’s night life is not all it’s cracked up to be.

And … did you kiss?
No, a gentle goodbye hug.

If you could change one thing about the evening, what would it be?
It was a great evening, why change anything?

Marks out of 10?
For the evening, food, conversation and the company, a straight 10.

Would you meet again?
We exchanged numbers.

Anona and Nadeem ate at Hotel du Vin, Poole. Fancy a blind date? Email