There’s a chill in the air, truly signalling the end of summer. But before you start bulk-buying slipper socks and planning your annual hibernation, remember that a relationship can survive the winter, and be as exciting as in those first throes of summer. Whilst you might feel less inclined to continue venturing out for your date nights (we admit, rooftop bars don’t have the same appeal mid-November), it doesn’t mean that you should both do-away with the romance once the sun has bid farewell.
Whilst we do love a good date night that involves venturing out into the capital (see our recommendations for your next stand-out date night), nothing kills the mood more than the drenched rat look. Nowadays the joy of taxi apps like Uber, means that the likelihood of being caught out in a torrential downpour whilst waiting for a night bus has lessened to zero; it has literally never been easier to avoid being soaked through for the sake of happy hour. Yes a rooftop bar is out of the question, but you can still enjoy those 2-for-1 cocktails inside. My personal favourite winter date night should I leave the confines of my living room, is to visit the cinema. Sharing popcorn with your other half has the kitschy nostalgia of your teenage self going on their first date and crushing hard; a feeling that, no matter how old we are, still makes us feel like giddy, giggly 13 year olds again.
Of course, watching a movie can be equally as sweet curled up at home on the sofa. The feeling that there exists only the two of you in the whole world is something to cherish. My advice though, is to avoid too much binge-watching; if you’re getting to the point where your imprints are a permanent fixture on the couch during winter, then make the effort to go out. It has to be said that another mood-killer is the ‘onsie that has super-imposed itself onto my skin and refuses to come off’ look. When this happens, leave immediately; doll yourselves up and head for the nearest and most luxurious, dimly-lit bar and then go dancing.
So what are the pros and cons of a night out versus a night in when the weather refuses to play fair and its pitch black outside by 6pm? Well, the pros of venturing out are; you won’t fall into a seasonal rut – no matter how good Netflix original series’ might be, if you’ve seen the channel’s entire repertoire before Christmas, you’ve resigned yourself to being forced to play charades post-turkey dinner. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. Another pro is that you’ll feel really hardy by not cowering away from the chill. You know how everyone laughed at you on that camping holiday for asking where the nearest Starbucks was? Well this is your chance to prove that you haven’t been ruined by the city’s easy-living corporate landscape; they may be able to use a camping stove in June, but once the sun goes down, you’re like the Bear Grylls of your social circle.
The main con is that, no matter how much you’ve geared yourself up to have the best night out ever, sometimes facing the brutal freeze head on is just no fun. In this situation, a hot beverage and a central heating system become the holy grail; concentrating on anything in the interim is futile, and you may as well admit defeat. head home, and plan a swift move to Australia on the way.
The biggest pro of a night in is that feeling of cosy; its the feeling you’re yearning for when your legs have turned a purplish colour, and they’re so goose-pimpled that a stranger mistakenly thought you were bringing white spotty tights back. The problem is that nights in can sometimes mean mundane; having your fifth TV dinner this week as you watch the same re-runs has a certain charm on occasion, but there are ways to avoid the aforementioned rut that you risk from a string of night-ins. Approach it with the same level of effort you would were you going to a fancy restaurant; cook a meal together, dress up (that onsie shouldn’t get too much of a look in this winter), turn the trash TV off and make conversation. That’s really all there is to it! It’s easy to switch off at this time of year, and we’re all guilty of neglecting our social lives in favour of layers and lounging, but doing this every day makes a routine out of a cosy [date] night in. The nicest thing about said cosy night in, is that its a chance to wind-down with a loved one after you’ve made the effort to do something together; whether your date night takes place inside or out, keeping things interesting can only guarantee you an exciting new year together.