Summer romances are different in an age of social media.
I discovered this a few weeks ago while on holiday with my best friend. It was our last night in France and we met two gorgeous boys who had thick French accents.
We spent seven hours with them, kissing in the sea and cuddling on the shore. It was very PG – a mix between the Lizzie McGuire movie and a Mary-Kate & Ashley film.
At around midnight, we bid adieu to our brief summer romances (we couldn’t risk going back to their flats – have you not seen Taken?). My friend and I returned to our hotel and I thought I would never see my beautiful French man again.
But then he added me on Facebook.
We still talk, but it feels intense. Too intense, really, for a man I’ve only met once.
This intensity reminds me of The Notebook. Social media changes everything, so I wanted to re-imagine the ultimate chick flick in an age of Instagram and Snapchat.
Welcome to The Notebook 2018…
Noah meets Allie on Tinder
Noah takes a break from reading Tennyson to have a few swipes on the dating app. He sees a beautiful redhead called Allie, whose bio reads, “Painter / Piano-player. Don’t count the days, make the days count.”
Instantly, he knows he is in love.
Better yet, she has swiped right to him, so it’s a match. He messages her straightaway. “What do you like to paint?”
Allie reads the message at the dinner table and her Dad tells her to put her phone away while they are eating.
She forgets to reply.
Noah sends another message 20 minutes later. “What kind of music do you play on the piano?”
Allie thinks he’s a bit too keen. She doesn’t reply.
Noah slides into Allie’s DMs
Three days pass. Noah has sent Allie numerous jokes, questions and GIFs of penguins blowing hearts to each other.
Allie ignores them.
Noah has no choice but to search for Allie on Twitter. After just two hours, he is able to track her down.
He slides into her DMs. “Hey! I’m not going to go away until you agree to go on a date with me.”
Allie realises Noah must be mentally unstable. From his Twitter handle, she looks him up on Facebook. To her surprise, they have two mutual friends – including the girl she met at a bar last night.
She texts the girl and asks whether Noah is unhinged.
“He’s intense, but he’s a sweetheart,” the girl replies.
Allie messages Noah: “OK, one date. And then you have to leave me alone.”
Noah and Allie fall in love
Somehow, perhaps because Noah is as emotionally manipulative as Dr. Alex on Love Island, they fall in love.
It quickly becomes intense. They want to spend every moment of their days together. In evenings when they are kept apart (Allie’s family disapproves) they communicate via Snapchat.
Noah re-watches Allie’s Insta story at least 14 times a day.
They are not immediately separated
One night, Noah takes Allie to the deserted old house that he wants to re-model. He takes a photo of her sitting on a rug, surrounded by candles, and uploads it to the ‘gram with the caption: “Future wifey.”
They talk, kiss and make love.
Then Noah’s phone alarm goes off. It’s 9pm – time to take Allie back to her parents. They’re on the other side of town, so Allie orders them an Uber.
They are, nonetheless, separated
Even though they get to spend the whole summer together, since Allie got home on time, the pair ultimately part ways when Allie heads to New York.
They kiss and cry in each other’s arms. Noah asks her to message him on Facebook as soon as she lands in New York.
Allie gets The Ick
For five days, Noah and Allie send messages back and forth. Every half an hour, Allie’s phone pings and Noah asks, ‘What are you doing?’ or tells her, ‘I’m thinking of you.’
Sometimes he says it all with a meme.
After a week, Allie starts to feel overwhelmed. She gets The Ick and doesn’t want to talk to him anymore. She mutes their conversation on WhatsApp.
Noah sends 365 WhatsApp messages
Allie thinks it is kinder to ghost Noah than to tell him she has The Ick. Unfortunately, Noah doesn’t get the message.
He sends her 365 long paragraphs – one every day for a year. After a year of ignoring him, Allie tells him it’s over. He messages her four times a day to ask why she no longer loves him. She blocks him on all accounts.
Noah has a social media detox
Noah goes on a big night out with his friends.
He asks his pal to take a video of him dancing and downing a VK. He uploads it to his Insta story with the caption: “These hoes ain’t loyal.”
He sees 30 people have viewed the story. Then 50. Then 70. As the numbers climb, he keeps scrolling through the names and wondering why Allie hasn’t seen it yet.
So he clicks on her profile and realises she has blocked him.
The next day, in a hungover state of despair and clarity, he deletes all of his social media accounts. “I’m having a social media detox,” he explains to his friends (who didn’t ask and don’t particularly care.)
They fall in love with other people
Allie meets a new boy on Bumble. His name is Lon and he is funny, left-wing and a feminist. The trifecta.
They move in together and plan their future.
Meanwhile, Noah goes travelling in Thailand to find himself. He realises he has been selfish and controlling in his past relationships, but wants to start again. He meets a girl from Bristol uni called Rain and they fall in love.
He even re-downloads Instagram to post about it.