I got thumbing through Tinder and one of the pretty faces that I liked was a match. I checked out her other photos now that Tinder only let’s you see their primary pic. The other photos did not inspire me at all, she’s a brunette who experiments with lighter hair colours, but she has a lengthy profile which in itself is novel for a woman on Tinder. Her words tell of someone multi-cultural, speaking numerous languages, is well travelled and interesting-sounding.
I decide to message her the next day and she responds. Over the course of the week we swap single messages at night, hers usually later than mine. We get a bit of banter going and she seems cheeky and fun. She was born in the Soviet Union and that has a curious fascination for me, always has ever since Baltic Babe. I become concerned that she’s fishing for a man with an EU passport but she tells me that has her own British passport. How did she come by that? Is she another Randy Russian who indulged in a marriage of convenience? She could be interesting to meet for a date. I suggest this and she agrees. Apparently fluent in six languages, I think of her as The Cultural Allsorts.
Could she be The One?
We meet in the concourse of a busy Tube station in the centre of London on a Sunday at noon. She asked for this location because she was having to go off somewhere else and could only spare me an hour. I’ve got to the point in my dating life when an hour is all I need to know whether I want to see someone again. A lunchtime coffee date works for me.
She is a quarter of an hour late which is never a good start considering she was impressing on me beforehand how short of time she was. At first sight I don’t like the look of her. Her photographs flatter her facially, although in a radical departure from convention, she is slimmer than in her pics. I had got there early and scouted around in the neighbourhood, finding several chain coffee shops that were relatively empty. Perfect for a quick and quiet conversation I thought.
Oh no, she had her own ideas about where she wanted to go and we ended up in the most upmarket coffee shop I’ve been to in my life. I’m open to new things so I didn’t mind. Coffee and cake, how difficult could it be? With her, very.
She was brought up in a Soviet Union republic and her family emigrated to America the first chance they got. Consequently she has retained the fussiness of Eastern European women and acquired the gastronomic moon-on-stick mentality of an American. I felt sorry for our young waiter whom she had running backwards and forwards to find out everything that she needed to know before making a decision. She reminded me of Baltic Babe; a pain to eat out with. This was not a good start.
Eventually she browbeat the hapless waiter into having the chef prepare something that wasn’t on the menu. I want and need to be with someone who is easy-going, a pleasure to be around, someone who invigorates me, not drains me. This woman will never be the wind in my sails, more like the torpedo in my hull.
“Do you like spicy food?” I ask, idly curious about her level of sexual energy.
“I love spicy food,” she replies.
Okay, good to know. I wouldn’t think her a sexual dynamo but you can’t tell from looks, but I’ve learned you can from how spicy a woman likes her food.
We start talking about travel, places we’ve liked and still want to visit. She has an affinity for Brazil and it strikes me that she could even pass for Brazilian. She has mixed colour hair and in most of her profile photos she’s a brunette. One of the reasons I wanted to come on this date is to see just how much of a difference there is with dating brunettes. My date of Friday night with Tall Gal, also a brunette, did not reveal much in that regard.
Expounding our work experiences reveals that we’ve worked for the same banks in London, just at different times. I get the impression that she’s a bit of an intellectual and academic. She works in high finance and is deliberately modest about that because she probably doesn’t want to intimidate men, who I think would be intimidated by her job. Not me though as it takes a lot to impress or scare me nowadays.
Of course Life doesn’t miss the opportunity to fuck with me. At the table next to us is sitting just the type of pretty blonde that I find irresistible. Her and I make eye contact a few times when The Cultural Allsorts is looking away. That’s the sort of girl I should be talking to. I’m still struck by how shallow I am; I want to look at the woman in front of me and go “wow” in my head periodically. I want to feel like I’m the luckiest guy in the world to be with her. I am now quite aware that if the lust factor isn’t there, everything else doesn’t matter. I just have to fancy the women I’m sharing my life with. Please don’t judge me, instead feel sorry for me, because this issue has probably led to my passing over perfectly good women.
Earlier, on my train journey into London, a young couple sat in my four-seat arrangement. Her and I had made eye-contact the moment they got on the train and he led her to sit where they did. He sat next to me while she sat diagonally opposite me. They were obviously a couple but I caught her sneaking little peeks at me. She was lovely and just what I want looks-wise. It was flattering but again it reminded how important this factor is to me.
So now in the coffee shop is an even more attractive blonde. Is Life teasing me, taunting me or is it guiding me, reminding me? I see these pretty little blondes whenever I go out, but very rarely do I find them on dating sites. Where do you go to my lovely? What must I do to meet a girl like you?
Conversation with The Cultural Allsorts rolls around culture and history so it’s almost inevitable that I find myself regaling her with a bit of history that I know. In this instance it’s about Cecil John Rhodes and from the serious amount of ear-lobe playing that it results in it becomes evident that she is loving what I’m saying. Hmm, is she another sapiophile?
I don’t actually care and even if she asked me to go home with her right now, I’d decline the offer. I’m totally disinterested in her, not just because I don’t fancy her, but also because I don’t feel any kind of chemistry. Her demanding behaviour when it came to ordering food also told me all about her relationship style that I need to know.
Despite the waiter’s best efforts and kitchen staff’s willingness to please, The Cultural Allsorts has only eaten a quarter of what she asked for. The rest is going to waste. If I fancied my date I would employ impeccable table manners, but seeing as I knew that I would never ever be seeing her again, I asked if I could finish her food which looked sumptuous. My coffee and tiramisu had merely served as an appetiser.
The pretty blonde at the table next to us gets up to leave and knocks her empty coffee cup over onto the table. We all look and the blonde guffaws before saying something to me that I don’t hear properly because I’m just too damn busy making the most of the opportunity to look at her fully. If she asked me to go home with her I’d call a taxi cab and incentivise the driver to be speedy.
Although she only allocated me an hour of her day, the date has lasted more than an hour and a half. I guess she must be enjoying herself? Hard to tell really but then she says, “I’m sorry, but I really need to get going now.”
I help The Cultural Allsorts with her coat and say my usual, “My mother brought me up funny,” just in case she was a totally liberated Westernised woman who found such things as overbearing or chauvinistic.
“Your mother brought you up right. It’s good,” she says. I’m pleased to hear that my old-fashioned manners are still appreciated in some quarters.
We walk to the nearby Tube station and I decide to be naughty by standing on the escalator in front of her so that we’re of the same height. She takes a step back. Ah, she’s not attracted to me I conclude. That’s fine, I was wondering. At a second set of escalators I do it again and again she takes a step back. Inwardly I laugh to myself but continue making small talk with her.
We’re both using the same train-line but going in different directions. I politely kiss her goodbye on both cheeks and say, “It was nice to meet you,” which she parrots back to me.
On the train home I delete Tinder from my phone. No more Tinderellas for me.
The date wasn’t a total waste of time. I don’t think brunettes are any different to blondes. I liked the way that Life reminded me of my curious magnetic attraction to blondes and I shall revert to this being my primary selection filter.
A good thing too, because my date tomorrow night is with a blonde.
The MILF of Xmas is a package deal; the kid thing will take a lot of thought on my part. I don’t know if I can handle that; I don’t feel emotionally equipped for it. I spend many hours on Sunday doing research on the internet about dating a single mother. The general consensus from other men on forums is ‘don’t’, but she doesn’t seem like the typical single mother I’ve read about.
The MILF of Xmas and I speak on the phone on Sunday night and we have good banter. It feels as good as the previous night’s date. I ask her to phone me on Monday night once she’s finished work.
We swap email addresses during the day, but she doesn’t phone me on Monday night. I send her a link to a YouTube music video that we discussed on Saturday night. I get no response and put it down to her being busy in the run-up to Xmas and having a child to look after. Or does this mean she’s about to start playing games? Do the power games now begin; seeing who calls whom first? Or is this really the effect of a child being involved?
It’s Tuesday, the day before Christmas Eve and she surprises me at 11am by messaging me on WhatsApp asking about my day. I respond neutrally and realize that it is now school holidays, so she should be off work and having to look after her son. She then asks if we can get together in the afternoon. I’m elated!
Seeing as I made the effort to visit nearer her town, she says she’ll come visit me in mine. Oh, how sweet. Her fair-mindedness is not wasted on me. I run around like a lunatic cleaning my home, then I go to the shops to buy a couple of Christmas presents for her. I wrap them with a smile on my face; I hope she likes them. It’s obvious to me that she can’t wait to see me again and is using swapping presents as an excuse. Obvious, right?
The MILF of Xmas arrives mid-afternoon, I meet her in my car park and I’m glad to see her. I hand her the Christmas presents, but she offers nothing in return. I’m surprised but tell myself that she just really wanted to see me. I feel proud to have her by my side as we walk along my town’s high street to a quaint family-run coffee shop. She’s so cute; she couldn’t hurt a fly.
We settle down to coffee and cake and begin chatting away, but I get the impression that she has something on her mind. I use my old tactic of just falling silent, waiting for the woman to choose the next topic of conversation as it usually reveals what is foremost on her mind. I wasn’t expecting what I got.
“There’s something I have to tell you,” she begins.
I put my fork down and look deeply into her blue eyes. This sounds serious.
“I’m actually seeing someone else right now,” she says.
Her words are like a dagger in my soul, it thrusts in and slowly starts to twist.
“I see,” is all I can say, as my heart plummets to my feet and my blood runs cold. Suddenly the table between us feels as wide as the Grand Canyon and she’s standing on the other side.
“We met through a mutual friend in October. Last week I decided to go onto Tinder to see who’s out there, which is when I came across you,” she says.
Every word she utters feels like a blow from a scalding hammer. I feel deflated and disheartened, but I try to not let it show. I knew that she was too good be true. However, there’s more.
“My trip to my parents this coming week with my son includes him,” she says.
I fall silent. I don’t know what to say and it feels like I’m shrinking in my seat.
“The thing is that I find him boring. We don’t have chemistry. You and I have the chemistry I want,” she says leaning towards me with a pleading look in her eyes.
I nod in understanding because of my experiences with Busty Blonde and Sweet Thing. If that chemistry isn’t there in the beginning, it’s never going to be there. Furthermore if it wasn’t for my situation of a few months ago with Busty Czech and The Saffa, I would be hopping mad and would want to walk out of the coffee shop. However, I have enough life experience now to understand how these situations can come about because I was in one very similar. I’m sure that there’s more to it than she’s telling me.
“Have you slept with him?” I ask.
“Yes,” she replies instantly.
Why did I ask that? I guess I need to know how serious it is. We fall silent for a few uncomfortable seconds.
“What would you do if you were in my position?” I ask.
“Hmm, I would say for you to get back to me once the other person is history,” she says.
I think about it for a few moments, my brain races and I quickly conjure up a plan.
“No, I’m not going to say that. I’m a much smoother operator than that. What I will say is that I’m prepared to keep seeing you, but the longer it takes you to get rid of the other guy, the less likely I am to keep seeing you.”
“Oh, okay,” she says with a puzzled look on her face.
“I’m not going to pressurise you. I’m not going to give you an ultimatum. That’s not a nice way of doing things,” I say with a smile.
The MILF of Xmas smiles back.
What she doesn’t realize is that I’ve just given her a test. If she’s good and decent enough for me she’ll say goodbye to the other guy as quickly as possible. The right thing all along is to have ended it with him before meeting someone else, but she didn’t. I can’t get all righteous and judgemental about it because I’ve done the same thing.
The question that needs answering is that of: does she feel enough chemistry and attraction with me in order to let go of the safety blanket that is the other guy? Is she rather going to cling to a little bit of something rather than risking everything in exchange for a shot at everything else she’s ever wanted?
I decide to go on the offensive. She’d asked me a question on Saturday night that didn’t sit well with me.
“Why on Saturday did you ask that if I lived where I did that it meant that I was a high-income earner?” I’m concerned that she has gold-digger tendencies. Some of my friends say that all women are gold-diggers, it’s just the extent that varies. I’m curious to see how she reacts to my question.
“I asked because I’m a very low earner. I can’t keep up with you if you are. You’re used to the finer things in life and I can’t afford those,” she says without a moment’s hesitation.
I find her answer charming. It’s nothing like what I was expecting. I remember that on Saturday she told me that she thought that I was posh. I thought it time to dispel any misconceptions that she had about me and to see for myself whether or not her actions matched her words.
“After we’re done here we’re going back to my place. Then you can see how modestly I live. My place is nothing special and it’s quite basic. Then you’ll see that I’m not posh,” I say emphatically.
The MILF of Xmas smiles; she seems pleased with that.
She pays for our cakes and coffees, something that I would have been uncomfortable with in the past, but her news makes it easier for me to let her pay.
Back at my place I show her around and she doesn’t say a word nor does she show any kind of reaction to my home. As she stands next to my sofa that I have fucked countless women on, she looks so different to all of them. She looks so cute and wholesome. I find her irresistible.
I walk over to her, stoop down and start to kiss her as slowly and gently as I know how. I hear her take deep breaths in through her nose and her eyes are closed. Our lips lock and we slow kiss; I can almost hear her heart beat. After a few seconds our tongues touch and we tease each other. It feels like we’re high-school teenagers kissing for the very first time…and it feels good.
We stand there kissing for several minutes and I can’t help but to start kissing her neck and throat. She loves it; the guttural sounds she lets off tells me so. I push my hands under her coat and she doesn’t resist. I wonder how far she’d let things go if I pushed my luck. Her body feels small and tight; it also feels good. I resist the temptation to feel her breasts.
I stop, not wanting things to get out of hand. I can envisage her laying naked on my sofa with me on top of her, dwarfing her, fucking her, making her cum with a scream that would startle the neighbours. No, that is not the right thing to do here. I put her coat back in place and offer to walk her to her car.
At her car we kiss passionately once more and she drives off. An hour later she sends me a message on WhatsApp: ‘Thank you for meeting me.‘ I’m not too sure what to make of that. I respond with ‘Thank you for being honest with me.‘ She replies ‘It’s the least I could do.‘
The fact that she felt the need to come clean with me counts as a good thing in my book. It shows some moral decency while also showing that she’s taking me seriously. Nevertheless, I feel uneasy about her now.
Christmas Eve I wake with a familiar empty feeling inside me. The MILF of Xmas is not everything I thought she was. I’ve made a fool of myself again. I believed what I wanted, based on the little I saw on Saturday. I should know better by now. I’m just going to leave her alone today.
Am I doing it again? Am I pursuing someone who just isn’t right for me? How do you ever really know until it’s too late?
Is she perhaps appealing to my White Knight Syndrome? I think not. I just find her so damn cute.
Xmas Day I decide to withdraw a little. I don’t want to pressurise her in any way. I also don’t want to let myself get carried away with someone who, in all likelihood, is putting on some kind of act that I’ve seen so many other women do. I know that I should phone her, but decide to merely send her a WhatsApp message. She responds within minutes with a positive and enthusiastic tone, thanking me for her presents. I then send her an email with a link to the Lily Allen video of ‘Somewhere only we know’. A quarter of an hour later she responds with a message saying, “That was beautiful, thank you ”
I leave it there, letting her get on with her day. I wonder if the boyfriend is there; probably.
Boxing Day I send The MILF of Xmas a WhatsApp message wishing her bon voyage. She responds with a polite thank you. I decide again to leave matters there. I’ve initiated the last three interactions. Let’s see how long it takes before I hear from her again.
A couple of times over the week that she’s gone she posts a few photos on Facebook. Yes, I found her on Facebook and her profile is totally wide open. Her son looks like a happy little guy. The photos on there are mostly of her ex-husband. He’s about my size, so she likes her men big. The guy she’s with now is a younger, scrawny version of me. Other photos show a normal, wholesome, family-oriented life.
Shortly before midnight on New Year’s Eve I get a mysterious message on WhatsApp. It’s from a number I don’t recognize, but it’s from a Spanish phone number. There’s no salutation or signature. They wish me a happy New Year and promise to “chat soon”. I can only surmise that it’s The MILF of Xmas, but it feels so generic. I latch onto the idea that it might be the boyfriend who has checked her phone, seen my number and is trying to pose as her to glean information. I have no idea why I came up with that idea, but I think it’s because of all the shenanigans over the last few years that has lead to being able to think like that. I respond the next day with a courteous “Thank you, you too.”
New Year’s Day The MILF of Xmas is getting back home on New Year’s Day. I’ve decided to not make contact, but to instead see how long it takes before I hear from her. As I write this, it’s going on for lunchtime on Friday 2nd January 2015. I’ve still not heard from her. I’m actually not too fussed about hearing from her. In the past week I’ve become increasingly uncomfortable with this situation. The central thought that comes to mind when I think of her is her child. I’m not sure I’m up to the task of being involved with a single mother.
If matters were to proceed, then my preferred scenario that I would want is to hear her say that she told the other guy about what is going on and he didn’t go to Spain with her; but I know that he did. A slightly less acceptable scenario is that she went away with him and at some point came clean with him. Anything other than that is unacceptable to me. Anything else just reeks of weakness or, worse still, just using him, deceiving him.
I wonder how this other guy would feel if he knew what was really going on, what she truly thought of him. He was blissfully ignorant of himself being in one corner of a triangle, she’s in another corner of her own making and me, well I’m on the other side from them both. Perhaps bliss is ignorance.
I know that this situation isn’t what I want and that I should let it slide. Letting it peter out is the smoothest course of action.
To this day I have not heard from her.
I’m left feeling disappointed, surprised and slightly bitter by this turn of events, but I think I dodged a cannonball.
Lessons learned: 1) Things are rarely as they seem. 2) Life as a single mother is complicated and it takes a special kind of man to become involved with one. I am not that kind of man. 3) My ability to read women is not as developed as I think.
The next day I’m speeding towards the trendy part of London where The Brazilian lives. My heart is pounding and there’s a little itch in my groin as thoughts of her race through my head. Could this be it? Is this Her? Finally, after all this time, effort and disappointment, could I finally have found The One?
Stop it. It’s only been one date, fool! You know the rules by now. Only get excited by the end of the third date because only then do you know if the feelings are mutual. Getting excited now is just setting myself up for a big fall. Keep it together. Be more Passive-Disinterested; it drives women wild.
I keep thinking about how much I wanted to kiss her yesterday. I even went home and looked up what the term for it is. Basorexilia: the overwhelming desire to kiss.
After more than an hour’s driving I get to her home which doubles as her business. I’ve always had immense admiration for anyone who runs their own business because I know how hard it is. We greet politely at her front door and it’s just cute kisses on each of her cheeks. I’m pretty sure that the real kissing will come later in the day.
In the blink of an eye we find ourselves on my picnic blanket in a nearby public park. Earlier I’d been to the shops as soon as they opened and bought everything anyone could want to eat at a picnic. The Brazilian is pleased with my surprise and suitably impressed by my selection. Conversation is easy, positive and energetic. She laughs at my every joke, but there’s much more going on between us.
The electricity between us is palpable and I want to kiss her. How and when should I make my move? I think she’s too much of a lady to make the first move. Almost all women are like that though; they want the man to initiate proceedings. Luckily for me I’ve never been afraid to lead.
As if on cue a cluster of rain-clouds speedily collect overhead and start spitting on us. I’m prepared for this and hoist the largest umbrella that I could find at home. I motion to The Brazilian to join me under it, which she duly obliges. Our shoulders are touching; it’s the strongest physical contact we’ve had so far and it feels good. I’ll try my luck soon. An idea comes to me.
I take a spicy cocktail samoosa and I feed it to her. She laughs as I do so, but she accepts my gesture. I’ve always thought it incredibly naughty and titillating to feed a woman food. It’s an erotic act that touches a woman on several levels. The most obvious mental image is that of feeding her my penis. On the cerebral level it also tells a woman that I am prepared and able to dominate her; that is a turn-on for women too. In my experience women find this act to be a part of foreplay and they like it.
“Oh, there’s a bit of crumb next to your mouth,” I say. There isn’t but I want her to think that there is.
The Brazilian wipes her mouth with the back of her hand. I smile to myself. Here we go…
“Nope. You’ve missed it. Let me get it,” I say.
I lean towards her, aiming my lips at the side of her mouth, but stopping just short from making contact. Will she pull away, signalling that she’s not yet ready to get physical with me? Or will she come in and meet my lips, thus showing her attraction and desire for me?
The Brazilian instantly moves her head to meet my lips with hers. Our lips are a perfect match. Our first kiss is slow and gentle. I just make my lips available and let her rise to the occasion. Whenever I’ve done this within a few seconds a woman is getting into the kiss as I can feel the energy within her rising, she closes her eyes and her breathing intensifies. It’s when I notice the breathing that I pull away, thus leaving her wanting more. As I pull away from The Brazilian she opens her eyes and they’re ablaze with passion. There’s something I need to know.
“When did you first want to kiss me?” I ask.
“From the very first moment I saw you standing outside the station.”
“Really?” I was surprised.
“Yes, and the whole time we were sitting on the sofa in the pub watching the Brazil game, all I wanted to do was kiss you.”
“Guess what? I wanted to kiss you then too.”
We both smile and then share a kiss that seemed to go on forever. Spots of rain fall on the ground around us as we kiss, but I don’t recall feeling a single drop land on me. It was one of those moments when the universe stood still, just for us, as our lips and tongues entwined, bonding not just our bodies but our souls too. I knew then for sure that I could fall in love with her.
Seeing as we’re having this moment of honesty and she’s forthcoming, there’s something else that I need to know.
“Tell me something. What kind of relationship are you looking for?” I ask, this question driven by the niggling fact that we found each other on Tinder.
“More than anything, I want a relationship free of drama.” She answers with a plaintive look in her eyes.
“Me too. I’ve had enough drama to last me another lifetime.”
I think for a few seconds, feeling her gaze still upon me, I turn and say, “I won’t hurt you, but you can hurt me, because I can take it.”
“I won’t hurt you,” she says softly.
The clouds multiply and an English Summer downpour forces us to abandon our picnic.
“How about we go back to my place?” The Brazilian suggests.
“I don’t think we have much choice,” I say, starting to pack everything away. I haven’t driven for so long only to go home after a couple of hours. I’m quite happy to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon with her snuggled up in my arms, watching movies, chatting and kissing occasionally. I think it’s too soon for sex; we only met 24 hours ago.
In the car park I pack picnic gear into my car and I watch as The Brazilian happily skips over to a rubbish bin to dispose of surplus packaging. She looks so cute and I spot her breasts bouncing. I hadn’t noticed before that she has surprisingly large breasts. Until now she’s kept them hidden away under a tasteful scarf, like most big-breasted women do. Hmm, I look forward to playing with those one day. Patience.
Back at her place she makes us coffee and we get comfortable upstairs in her lounge area which is cluttered with unpacked boxes. The downstairs of her dwelling is reserved for her business. We sit side by side on her new fabric sofa as she flicks through television channels trying to find something that might distract us. We’re in serious danger of ripping each other’s clothes off and fucking like rabbits, such is the sexual tension between us.
The Brazilian finds a mindless rom-com and we pretend to watch it. She excuses herself and goes to another room, returning wearing a tight t-shirt and flimsy tracksuit trousers. She looks so sexy and her breasts are on full display. Damn, they look squeezable!
She throws herself down on the sofa, snuggling up next to me. After a minute of silence The Brazilian snaps me out of my train of erotic thought by uncharacteristically asking me a question about myself.
“What’s your favourite type of ending to a movie?”
“At the end of the movie, ‘When Harry Met Sally’, Harry says to Sally, ‘when you realize that you’ve met the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, the rest of your life can’t start soon enough’,” I say.
“I like that. It’s beautiful,” she replies and sighs.
I cup her face and we kiss…and keep kissing. The Brazilian is getting turned on, the sounds she’s making tell me so. What do I do? Should we go all the way? No, it’s too soon for my liking. I want a loving relationship that has sex as the finishing touch on top, not the foundation of where it all started. Am I wrong in this regard? Perhaps, but it’s what I’m comfortable with. Fucking first then hoping for love afterwards is not likely to work in my opinion.
The Brazilian comes to life, opens her eyes that are blazing again and pulls away from me. She gets up and clambers onto the sofa with both feet, deftly stepping one foot over my legs before lowering herself down onto my lap, facing me. She slides her arms behind my head and starts grinding her crotch into mine.
Four months have gone by with Busty Blonde and love has not materialized. I had high hopes that with patience and each of us being who we are that love would put in an appearance. It hasn’t and I don’t think it’s going to. The fault lies on my side.
She is everything I need, but not everything that I want. I’ve been writing about Baltic Babe and remember how I felt about her, how excited I was to be seeing her. That’s how it should be. I just don’t feel that way about Busty Blonde and I don’t think I ever will. I keep asking myself “why?” and the answer is the same: the magic, the chemistry, just isn’t there. The chemistry between us is more like being with a really good friend, not The One.
I find it sad that mundane things like making coffee for us are exactly that – mundane. If it was with Baltic Babe or Krazy Gal, the simplest of things would take on an other-worldly significance, so bewitched by them I was. I fear that I am making a fool of Busty Blonde. She seems so happy and content with me, but if she knew how little I felt for her by comparison, her legs would give way under her and she would collapse in a heap on my carpet and start sobbing.
I’m feeling very bad about this situation because I know that Busty Blonde has done nothing wrong, but I have to end it with her. Busty Blonde knows about my blog and has asked me not to write about her. I have said that I’ll keep any references to her to an absolute minimum. It’s the least I can do for her. Thus I’m only mentioning a few things that are relevant to my quest and lessons learned along this uncertain route.
Busty Blonde being made redundant has hit her hard and I’ve been hoping and waiting for her to find a new job, but this has been long in coming too. I now find myself playing the role of an emotional crutch at a time when she feels low about herself. Sitting at home alone during weekdays has slowly eroded her self-confidence. If I dump her now there’s no telling the damage I’ll do. I’m fully aware that the longer I take to leave her be, the worse it’ll be when I inevitably do so, but I’m counting on a feel-good factor from her getting a new job.
From a selfish perspective Busty Blonde has restored my faith in women significantly. Without her knowing it she halted my plummet into losing all respect for women because of what I had experienced through online dating. She is one of the most decent, honourable, respectable people I have encountered in my life. I know that I’m going to have the opposite effect on her in that she’ll be shell-shocked for a long time and might never trust another man. I fear that I might have damaged or ruined someone remarkable. I’m ashamed of that.
The dating cycle.
How did I let this happen? What was the build-up to this disastrous situation? What can I learn so that I don’t do it again? We make the same mistakes in life until we take the time to learn from them.
Friends-with-benefits was toxic for me. It addled my brain with a distorted view of reality. I was wearing pussy-vision while high on a cocktail of meaningless sex, never-ending blowjobs, frustration and revenge. The latter is supposedly a dish best served cold, but for me it was red-hot (videoing a woman masturbating with a champagne bottle is emblazoned in my psyche for life now). Anal-izing women who wanted it blew my mind. I was running the risk of becoming addicted to the sexcapades and hi-jinks that online dating effortlessly led to. Double-, triple- and quadruple-dating was remarkably easy when stringing along unsuspecting innocents, but what did it say about me? I was turning into a selfish player – a monster – and opting to commit to Busty Blonde brought me to my senses.
The feeling of permanence that came with seeing Busty Blonde, fleeting as it was, felt like an emotional exhale. I became a bit of my old self again and am able to see just how far off my path of nobility and decency I have strayed. Do I miss the adrenaline rush of discovering a new lover’s sexual preferences? Yes. Do I miss the high drama of that first date? Only a little bit. Do I have a burning desire to go internet dating again? No. Do I still want to find The One? Absolutely.
How best to proceed?
I’m wanting to keep my options open with Busty Blonde. Love might finally materialize, but on the assumption that it’s unlikely to, it’s in my interest to see if there’s anyone else who might be The One.
Yes, I’m being chicken-shit and not ending it with her immediately. Not yet at least.
I’ve given myself a deadline of 1st June at which point, if I’m not in love with her, I’ll say goodbye as best and as compassionately as I know how. Heaven knows I’ve had enough experience at letting women down. In those six weeks I dearly hope that Busty Blonde finds a job. If she does before that date then a week later I’ll do the hard but right thing.
What I can’t figure out just yet: is my heart hard or is my heart weak?
I’ve reactivated my OKCupid profile just to see who’s joined the dating circus since last year and there is a stand-out profile. I find it almost impossible to not make contact…oh, and look, there’s a cute South African on MatchAffinty who has written to me too…
LESSONS LEARNED: 1) I have to get it in my head that getting involved with the wrong person can never turn out right. 2) If the chemistry isn’t there on the first date, it’s unlikely to arrive later. 3) I have to be more selective in who I go on dates with 4) I want a relationship more than I want to fuck around.
Her’s was one of the first profiles that caught my attention on the national newspaper’s dating site because she was so pretty in her photographs; a quintessential English Rose. I sent off an approach email and she responded within hours, which is always a good sign as my dating experiences have proven to me so far. She was a primary school teacher and lived in the same county as me, but we were on opposite ends of it. We couldn’t agree on a mutually convenient date to meet because she was going away on holiday. In that time I became embroiled with Musician Gal, The Irish Cougar and a couple of other minor dates, the most recent of which, Make-up Madam, was not ticking all my proverbial boxes. Optimistically I resurrected contact with Pretty Teacher and again she was quick to respond and this time we had time for each other.
Could she be The One?
It’s a dreary Saturday morning in October as I arrive at the Pretty Teacher’s apartment complex. Until now all women have been happy to meet somewhere public and I put that down to being a safe thing to do, but today’s date was insistent that we first meet at her place and then go somewhere. The ‘somewhere’ I found interesting because there isn’t much around her dormitory town to see and do.
I ring her entry-phone and within a minute she comes down. Wow, she is as pretty as her photos! For once a woman who not only looks like her profile pictures but might also be better looking in real life. She’s slender, comes up under my chin, has clear unblemished milky white skin and shoulder-length golden-blonde hair. Her eyes are a bright sky-blue. Just the look I like! I smile my approval and she reciprocates.
Before we’ve even said a word and there is a connection between us. It’s obviously a mutual physical attraction that we have and it confirms to me that this is what was missing with Make-up Madam. Lust is indeed part of chemistry. It sets a positive base on which to build further, if that’s possible.
“How about we jump in my car and go to the next town over for lunch?” she suggests.
“That sounds good to me,” I retort, taken aback by her confidence and brazenness. This date is off to an unusual start because no woman I’ve met would be happy to have a strange man get in her car with her like this.
We chatter away seamlessly as if we’ve known each other for a long time while Pretty Teacher speeds recklessly through country lanes that I hope she knows well. She’s well-dressed in smart jeans and white blouse covered in a long grey coat. Her car is new and funky; this is a classy woman. I might be onto something here.
We end up having lunch in a coffee shop in a historic market town that I’ve never been to. Pretty Teacher is 35 and I’m 42, but that age-gap is invisible and irrelevant because we get along so well. As time ticks on I’m filled with a sense of relief that stems from feeling an affinity with her. We’d pretty much covered basic requirements in our email exchanges and it’s pleasant to have that exaggerated and brought home in real life. As we talk and laugh it becomes evident that we like and dislike the same things and to a similar degree. This feels good, it feels right.
Then I catch myself remembering a couple of things from her profile that don’t sit well with me. She stated a preference for a wealthy man, which is not that unusual because no woman wants to be with a poor man, but it featured heavily as a ‘non-negotiable’. She also hasn’t made up her mind about whether she wants children or not. I decide not to broach these topics because it’s only the first date. My instincts tell me that we’ll be having more dates.
We go for a walk around a local park as a cold Autumn wind nips at our cheeks. I think we both want to keep the date going as we’re enjoying ourselves but it’s getting too cold outside. Before I can suggest something Pretty Teacher speaks.
“It’s getting chilly. How about we go find a cosy fireplace in a pub? I know just the place,” she says.
I just smile at her directness, which I find refreshing. Some people are just too scared to say what they’re feeling and thinking, but not Pretty Teacher. I’m really starting to like her and it’s only been a matter of hours.
Once back in her car she speeds like a crazed maniac through residential streets. Her car must be very new and she’s putting it through it’s paces, I tell myself. We arrive at a sleepy pub on a busy road. Inside there is the obligatory barfly and a roaring fireplace waiting for us.
We sit side by side on a large leather sofa and conversation flows like sweet nectar. I was only expecting a quick lunchtime coffee and cake, perhaps she was too, but neither of us seem to want today to end.
Then it started.
“I’m sorry, but I hope you don’t mind, but I just have to check my phone,” she says, getting her phone out and almost feverishly investing her attention into that.
It has been almost six hours together, she hasn’t had the chance to do the safety-call to a friend that most women on dates do, otherwise this might be a little rude. I give her the benefit of the doubt because there is probably other things going on in her life like a family emergency that I’m not aware of.
We resume talking after a few minutes, but the phone has been left on because it’s making noises in her handbag. About ten minutes later she breaks away from our conversation again to check her phone. She stares at it intently, obviously reading something serious, so I don’t interrupt. She quickly fingers her phone and puts it away.
I continue with our conversation while being aware that I’m very interested in her but am trying not to show it. I force myself to become Passive-Disinterested in her. After all I’ve had loads of practise doing it naturally. On cue her body language becomes more focussed on me which confirms to me that she is very interested in me too. This is going well.
Her phone chortles in her bag and without making an apology she gets it out to read whatever it is that someone has sent her. She eagerly types a short reply while smiling. I’m now interested in what’s going on. I also don’t want this date to go on all night; I want to woo her. Yes, I fancy her and would love to take her to bed, but I’m willing to wait for the right time. However, I need to make sure that the way forward is not a highway littered with strewn baggage from her past.
“Is there some kind of emergency? Do you need to be somewhere else?” I ask, more out of consideration than anything else.
“No, no, it’s all fine,” she says and our conversation resumes.
It’s now dark and hunger has arrived, so we order a meal each. Over dessert she grabs her phone again and stares at it intently. She makes a seething sound, sucking in air through her pearly-white teeth. This is getting annoying now.
“So what is it that is distracting you from your dessert?” I ask.
“Oh, you may as well know now,” she begins.
I don’t like the way she said that. Oh shit, what now? She’s married, in the midst of a messy divorce, has a stalker or is supposed to be meeting another guy for a date right now?! From all these dozens of dates that I’ve been on I’ve heard all sorts of horror stories about what other people get up to in their messy private lives.
“I’m addicted to playing online scrabble with my friends,” she says with a guilty look on her face.
What the fuck?! Seriously?! Online scrabble via a phone. Every ten minutes you just have to?
“Addicted? That’s a strong word,” is the best I can come up with.
“Yes, it’s silly, I know, but I just can’t help it,” she answers.
I don’t expect my other half to be perfect, I only expect that when we”re together that it feels perfect. With time I might prove more of a distraction for her and this scrabble is just a passing fad. I decide to not make a fuss over something so small. It’s just a date after all, albeit a very promising one.
We sit and talk and laugh some more next to that fire which slowly burns down, almost at the same speed as our fondness for each other grows. My stunt with Career Girl comes to mind and I decide to go for it.
“I can’t make out what colour your eyes are. Can you come closer?” I begin.
Pretty Teacher shuffles closer.
“I still can’t see. The lighting’s bad. Come closer,” I say.
She smiles and leans in close to me. I can clearly see the colour of her eyes, but we both know that that’s not what’s going on here. I only need to move my head forward a few inches and we can kiss, but I’m not going to.
“Closer,” I whisper.
Pretty Teacher comes full into my face, closes her eyes and kisses me. I kiss back and it feels perfect.
I like to think that’s how I hooked her, but the truth is I might be the one who was hooked. Which one of us was going to become addicted first?
I had seen that photo somewhere before. She was wearing a black tophat, her chin lifted and in profile with an imperious look in her eye. Natural long blonde hair draped her neck and shoulders. It was the end of August and I had come across a dating site that was “skinned” for a famous newspaper. This means it was a single database of profiles with various websites using it, but with a “skin” that was in keeping with each website.
Her narrative spoke of a happy person who had done adventurous things in her life. She claimed to have old-fashioned values and hinted at wanting to be a home-maker. Travel was important to her. The five photos included were all clear and tasteful too. I liked the look of her; she was pretty and, of course, blonde. There wasn’t anything in her profile that I did not like, so I wrote to her at lunchtime, not really expecting a response.
Later that night she wrote back. It was an open and honest reply, far longer and serious than a regular first message from a woman. She said that she hoped to be married and living in the countryside one day. This took me aback a little and made me think about my own position on marriage. She also wanted to see more than one photo of me as my profile only had one. She boldly stated “I love a fit man…no exceptions!”
She knew exactly what she was about and wanted. Nor was she afraid to ask for what she wanted – I liked that. The next morning I uploaded more pictures of me on to my profile and wrote a short message to her. I replied in a non-committal way to her assertion about marriage with: “For the record, I have no objection to marriage. It’s a fine institution. Some of my friends might say I’m just about ready for an institution.”
The next morning, a Saturday, a very lengthy reply was waiting for me. She told me of her passion for travel, her love of food and her yearning to live in the countryside. She told me of her job, her hobbies and sporting interests. She detailed her exercise habits and said that she was going to have an operation on her left knee in October. It all sounded like she was a wonderful match for me. I had been in this position before and knew not to get my hopes up. People in person are almost always very different from their profile and email persona. I did very much want to meet her.
The next day, the Sunday, I wrote a reciprocal response and over the course of the day we exchanged several open and honest messages. She told me that she was a trombone player and practised with a band every week. I decided to call her “Musician Gal” in my mind. We described our perfect days, which were remarkably similar, involving walks in the country, great lunches, bathing and then falling asleep together. We were getting along well via email, so I suggested that we meet and gave her my mobile number.
There was no response and the conversation died. It seemed to me that she was just another woman looking for attention via the safety of a computer screen. At the merest mention of actually meeting in person they baulk and run away, scared like little girls being summoned behind the bike sheds by an older boy. I knew enough not to pursue her, otherwise I would come across as desperate. In nature, if you run at a wild animal, it will run away. So it is with women too. I knew also that the best course of action was inaction tempered with patience. These two concepts do not come naturally to me. A part of me also did not expect to hear from her again.
A few days went by and then on a cool Wednesday night my phone rang. It was Musician Gal, walking over Westminster Bridge after work, seemingly in the mood for a chat and, to my mind, a screening phone call. Her voice was deeper and more strident than what I expected. She oozed confidence and I could tell that she was a high-energy person, but all that might be bravado and nervousness. We chatted about nothing in particular and were like two heavy-weight boxers in a ring, manoeuvring around each other, careful not to show a moment of weakness, but keen to make an impact when the opportunity presented itself.
The small talk was going well and I thought it the right time to suggest that we get together. I had not come across as a weirdo or prat and before I inadvertently did, no matter how subtly, I just had to make my move. She thought about it for a split second and said “How about tomorrow night?” I like a decisive woman. Dithering and agonising over getting together is such a turn-off. The point of internet dating is the “dating” bit, is it not?
Could she be The One?
Thursday 5th September and I’m standing outside my regular spot outside Tower Hill Tube station. I swear that some of the tourists looked familiar, I’ve been there that often in the past year. It was a pleasant evening with a light breeze clearing the air. Summer was leaving us and I knew this night might be one of the last for al fresco dining. I had my mind set on the Dickens Inn yet again. Why not? It’s familiar ground and a great setting. All the other girls were impressed by it. It certainly was a safe bet.
Several women who looked like Musician Gal had arrived, loitered, fiddled with their phones, checked their look and then met up with someone. There were a couple of women who looked like older versions of her and I so hoped that they weren’t her. I just don’t have a poker face and the disappointment on my face would be noticeable if my date’s appearance was not to my liking.
You know that feeling? That strange inexplicable feeling that someone was looking at you? I looked instinctively to my left and locked eyes with Musician Gal. My inner dialogue couldn’t help but blurt out “Oh, YES!”. She was lovelier than I imagined. Her pictures didn’t do her justice. Musician Gal WAS pretty and obviously a natural blonde, there were no hints of dark roots. Her profile did state that she was 5 foot 4 inches tall, but I was surprised by the difference in our height as she was shorter than I had imagined. Her body was neither slim nor over-weight and there was a hint of boobage. She was elegantly dressed in a cream-coloured ladies suit with a small handbag draped over one shoulder and was carrying what looked like a laptop bag in one hand.
She was coming out of the Tube station and was leaning on a hand railing with her free hand in an attempt to help herself up the few stairs before her. Our eyes unlocked and she looked down at the stairs in front of her. I could see obvious discomfort flash momentarily across her face as she pulled herself up. Her knee condition was pretty serious.
I traipsed down the few stairs in front of me to meet her. My heart was pounding and I was excited in the right way. Could she finally be The One? She certainly looked the part. I think we all carry a vague impression in our minds eye of what kind of person we find physically attractive. Almost all of us have a “type” that we are irresistibly drawn to. Musician Gal was my “type”. I could quite easily imagine how she felt under me, as I splayed her legs open with my thighs and rested my weight on my elbows, kissing passionately as I slid my penis in to her moist pussy. Physical attraction is not a choice, it’s a reaction that we can’t control. Either it’s there or it isn’t. For the first time in a long time, since Krazy Gal in March in fact, it was there – it was before me.
We met on the landing and I uttered something before kissing her on each cheek. She was smiling. It was a genuine happy smile. I took that to mean that she liked the look of me too. Presumptuous perhaps, but I’ve been on a enough dates to know. I looked at the long steps below us that lead to St Katharines Dock and suggested that we follow the road that lead to Tower Bridge as that had a gentle decline. Before I could offer to do the gentlemanly thing by way of offering her my arm, she grabbed it and leaned gently on it. This was out of necessity as it was obvious to me that her knee was causing her pain.
Arm in arm we hobbled past the numerous sets of traffic lights when it was safe to cross the road. To my relief, light and pleasant conversation came easily to us, but she seemed more nervous than me. We arrived at a set of stairs on the approach to Tower Bridge that lead down to the restaurants on the outskirts of St Katharine Docks. Musician Gal seemed apprehensive, so I offered to carry her down. Naturally she guffawed and declined my offer, but I was dead serious. Instead she suggested that I walk in front of her and one step down so that she could lean on my shoulder. Like that we hobbled down about 20 stairs.
I mentioned to Musician Gal that I had the Dickens Inn in mind as where we would eat. Her neck stiffened and her face showed disapproval. I couldn’t help think that her reaction was borne out of some past experience there. A really bad date or a favourite haunt of an ex-boyfriend perhaps? I wasn’t going to ask. A French-themed restaurant chain had a branch to the right of where we were standing. She suggested that we stopped off there for pre-dinner drinks. I got the impression that she didn’t want to walk further than was necessary.
The greeter at the front of the restaurant took us to a table outside and away from the noisy crowds that were starting to form in the area. There were several other eateries with outside space occupied by people standing drinking or sitting and eating. A quiet space was at a premium and I would have preferred the much quieter Dickens Inn. Nevertheless, I wasn’t going to make a fuss and decided that when the noise level became a problem that we would move on for food elsewhere.
I noticed that the greeter had a South African accent, so I started a quick conversation in Afrikaans with her. She was astounded to have a random punter suddenly speaking her native tongue. Musician Gal was smiling and bemused. I did this deliberately not because it is polite to engage in conversation with a fellow ex-South African, but I wanted to see how my date dealt with the situation. Would she be put out that I was talking to another woman in a language that she did not understand? Would she deal with it in good grace? It was the latter.
Musician Gal selected an Australian voignier and her knowledge of wine impressed me. In fact, everything about her had so far impressed me. She was attractive, well groomed, positive, lively, confident, well mannered and easy to talk to. She seemed very interested in me, which I deduced from how she spoke to me, how she looked at me and what she asked about. Just her asking questions in itself was a very good sign. We were off to a good start.
The conversation flowed easily and involved the usual first date topics of conversation. Safe topics such as work history, travel experiences, favourite films and books, memorable pop concerts and living in London all showed a lot of common ground and indicated no obvious or serious issues that could be deal-breakers. Drinking chilled wine during sunset was going down well and we became a little tactile, with little touches on forearms to emphasize a point, or her playfully slapping me on the shoulder if I said something cheeky. The intensity of this first date was increasing at a sure and steady pace; it was all heading in the right direction. We obviously fancied each other and were getting along well.
Stars in the skies were coming on and the bottle of wine had evaporated. It was only when a gregarious waiter came along did we realise we needed some food. After briefly agreeing to stay where we were for dinner, we quickly scanned the menu and ordered what we felt like. A noticeable breeze had picked up and we were exposed to it, so we moved around a corner to a wind-sheltered area that was more secluded, quieter and private. By now I found myself wondering what it would be like to kiss her.
She was talkative and lively and was one of the most confident women I had ever met. I liked all that. I find it hard work to always be the one to make conversation and to decide things. I wanted an equal partner who wasn’t afraid to make decisions, nor reluctant to say what she wanted.
The conversation started to turn serious when she told me that she had ADHD. My godson has the condition so I knew a little about it. It explained her high-energy, upbeat demeanour. She told me how her brain worked differently to other people’s. She told me about her learning difficulties and her hyperactive nature. I did pause for a moment to consider whether I could live with a hyperactive person. I’m inclined to say “not”, but I didn’t say that to her. I had meant it when I wrote on my profile that “I’m not perfect, nor do I expect my other half to be perfect. What I do expect is that when we’re together, it all feels perfect.” However, was this something I could put up with in a relationship? I would have to think about it…more information required.
Our starters arrived and we were both hungrier than we realized. Conversation died down as we ate, but we did maintain eye contact. ADHD or not, I knew that I wanted to kiss her that night. We took turns feeding each other morsels from our respective plates. We had both chosen well, the food was good. Uncharacteristically I ordered another bottle of the same wine that we had just finished. I say it’s uncharacteristic for me because I normally don’t drink so much on a date, but that night felt different. It felt like we could spend the entire night there, talking, laughing, occasionally touching, just enjoying each other’s company.
After a few more minutes of banter, our main courses arrived. Like a couple who had seen many Summers together, we shared what we had on our plates. We were that comfortable with each other within hours of first meeting. What happens when two grounded, confident people meet? I was finding out.
Once we had finished our dinner under the stars, the conversation became more subdued, vulnerable even. I judged her demeanour to be calm, relaxed and her natural defences for a first date were down. I couldn’t resist the urge and leaned over, cupped her head with my left hand and gently pulled her towards me. There was a moment’s resistance and hesitation on her part, surprise largely I would guess, but she came forward and our lips locked. Hers were soft, moist…and surprisingly muscular. She was a trombone player after all and it showed.
I love that moment when I have a first kiss with a woman. Everything around me disappears. Even sound seems to stand still. It’s as if the entire planet has frozen, awaiting the outcome. An instant hush takes hold and time stands still, just for us.
I had read somewhere to not be the first to use the tongue when kissing, but instead wait for the woman to do so. I ignored this advice and gave a gentle prod with my tongue against her bottom teeth, a little teaser. The response was instantaneous and powerful. Her tongue came to life in the forefront of my mouth and it was strong…that trombone again. It brought back memories of the time my mouth was raped by the Baltic Babe.
We parted and she was smiling, half pleased, half surprised. I think she liked my act of confidence. We sipped our wine and made some small talk, not referring to what had just happened. Then I had a naughty idea. I took a mouthful of wine, but didn’t swallow. I leaned over to her again, no hand involved this time and she came forward willingly, oblivious as to what I was about to do. Again our lips locked, but after a few seconds I slowly widened my mouth and let a little wine slip out into her mouth. She was surprised, making a muffled sound, but didn’t disengage. I slowly released the rest of the wine in my mouth in to hers and she seemed to accept it eagerly. I could feel her body rising in response to what was happening to her. Was I turning her on?
We sat back, both smiling. I think she was feeling a gamut of emotions. I’m sure that she was having fun; I was. The South African greeter arrived to see if we wanted dessert. I looked around to see that the hordes of people had struck their bargains for the night and had left. The wind might have blown some of them away, but a few die-hard couples were stilling resolutely chatting away, scattered in the exposed open areas. Musician Gal decided to excuse herself and visit the ladies room. I chatted with my compatriot until my date returned who also joined in the conversation, which switched into English. I was paying attention to how she spoke to the greeter. I had learned to observe how a date treats someone who is powerless before them. It’s an indicator as to how they will behave towards you in a relationship. Musician Gal was polite, respectful and affable.
We declined dessert and the greeter left us. It was getting late and the wine needed finishing. We imbibed and she leaned over to me. I suspected what was coming and went along with it. We kissed and she poured wine in to my mouth. The sincerest form of flattery is imitation, is it not?
Sitting back, laughing, I asked a waiter for the bill. I knew it was time to bring the evening to an end. The night could have lasted forever as far as I was concerned, but I knew then already that there would be other nights such as this with my Musician Gal. Perhaps even many.
I walked her to the Docklands Light Railway station at Tower Gateway. We stood at the foot of the escalators, kissing freely, without inhibition and passionately. She had a thing about being hugged. She wanted to fit snugly in a man’s chest as he held her. It was time for her acid test. I wrapped my arms around her back and held her close against me. She fitted me well. It all felt good and natural.
Not wanting the evening to end there, like that, I escorted her to her train that was waiting. I stood on the platform and she inside the doorway of the carriage. I don’t remember how it came to be, but I found myself pulling her blouse towards me with my index finger and peering down in to her cleavage. I think having had a bottle of wine each was starting to have an effect. The train started making a beeping noise, so we kissed one last time and said good night.
I walked to trusty Tower Hill Tube station in a wonderful frame of mind accompanied by a fuzzy feeling all over my body. No, it wasn’t the alcohol, it was the cumulative effect of the entire night. It was one of my best dates ever and I really liked Musician Gal. I could see the potential of a relationship with her. It was a scary and exciting notion, all in one. Had I finally found what I had been looking for for so long?
The next day she sent me a text message which simply read:
“I did think we could talk for hours which was a really good sign! X”
I responded elaborately with:
“Agreed. Apparently I’m a 98% match for you. What a dreary day. If we were many months in to a relationship and it was a weekend…I’d put Top Gun on my big telly, we’d snuggle under a blankie and feed each other popcorn, occasionally sipping fine wine…my bodyheat warming you. Decadent, huh?”
“Many months?! Weeks! X”
The coming weekend Musician Gal was going to New York and only returning on Tuesday but suggested that we meet that night. Career Girl was returning on Monday and she has asked if we could go out together that night. There was also someone new who I would be meeting on Tuesday. Before all that happened the Sunday was my birthday and I had lustful plans of revenge for my Exgf.
In recent weeks a plethora of potential matches has hit Plenty of Fish; I can only guess they don’t want to spend the Summer alone. One pretty blonde, thirty-five year-old lady catches my eye (amongst others), but this one seems different. The energy captured in her photos speak of someone grounded and wholesome. Her words are humble and down-to-earth.
I write an approach email commenting on something in one of her photos and it leads to good-natured banter via email between us. In her first reply she makes a point of telling me that she’s Polish. I decide to keep an open mind and forget about the Picky Pole date. She quickly agrees to meeting up for a date. Perfect; I hate email ping-pong.
Could she be the One?
It’s a Monday night after work and the sun is tingeing people’s skins outside Tower Hill Tube station. Other daters arrive and stand around, expecting to meet someone too. It’s busy and some of the women look like they could be my date. I ride an emotional roller-coaster each time I see a blonde who might be her.
Jeez, I hope that’s not her! Nope, it isn’t. Phew. There, that one, she’s looking at me. Ah, there’s her fella. Wow! She’s nice, I hope that’s her. Nope, that must be her parents. Pity. Hmm, is that her? Looks a bit frumpy. Good, she’s meeting some friends. This one looks alright. She’s kissing another girl. I think I saw some tongue there. Oh no, I hope this isn’t her. Keep walking, keep walking, don’t make eye-contact…thank god, she walked past.
I know that the day will come when I look back on all these dates and laugh about them. More than anything I look forward to the moment when I know she’s The One, while we’re lying on our sides, legs entwined and lost in each other’s eyes, I say to her with all my heart “I knew you existed”.
Out of the corner of my eye I spot my date. She’s tall, slender, wearing a one-piece white dress and white court shoes. Her hair is straight, almost touching her shoulders and she’s a natural blonde. Her eyes are the colour of the sky above us. She is pretty and looks angelic. My heart jumps. Finally, is this Her?
I instantly think of her as ‘The Pretty Pole’.
My sense of relief at her attractiveness causes me to not notice her facial expression when she first sees me. I say her name and kiss her hello on a cheek as she smiles. She tries to say my name and gets it horribly wrong. I just laugh and tell her how to say it.
At the stairs I do my usual thing of, “Tell me something, do you like chicken?”
“Yes. Why?” The Pretty Pole says predictably.
“You better take a wing then,” I say with my best smile and extend an elbow towards her.
“I’m sorry, but I don’t understand,” she says with a puzzled look on her face.
“It’s just a little joke. Never mind. Would you like to take my arm as we go down these stairs?” I respond, a little disappointed that she didn’t catch my attempt at humour. She holds onto my arm as we make our way down the stairs and, like most other women, she lets go once we’re on flat ground. That’s fine, it shows me she is comfortable with me, no sign of trust issues, we’ve broken a physical barrier, so it’s all good.
As we walk to St Katharine Dock, we chat away and she’s only been in the UK for two years. When Poland joined the European Union in 2004 over a million young Poles moved to the UK in the following two years. Compared to her compatriots she’s a late arrival. I ask The Pretty Pole about this.
“I got divorced and wanted a new start. My friends here kept telling me to come over, so here I am,” she says with a heavy Polish accent. I can make out what she’s saying because I speak several languages to varying degrees of fluency, but I think a native English-speaker would struggle with her accent.
“Is my accent a problem for you?” I ask.
“No, it’s fine as long as you speak slowly,” she replies.
I endeavour to speak as slowly as I can, for both our benefits. In my job I work with a wonderfully mixed assortment of nationalities and I am often asked to address everyone as my accent is the most neutral. I’m pretty sure that my accent won’t be a problem
At the Dickens Inn the usual waiter looks at me and cocks his head sideways. I smile proudly. This is third woman he has seen me with in five days and she’s the prettiest. Once seated at “my table” on the balcony, I’m quite happy to let The Pretty Pole talk. I’ll just sit back and admire her beauty. She’s lovely. I like the look of her and especially like the vibe I’m getting off of her. She’s down-to-earth, not flighty, nor high-spirited, but a pleasant reminder of what refinement and sophistication is. She’s a true lady.
As is the norm on a first date the initial topic centres on what we do for work. I tell her what I do and she tells her line of work.
“I arrived in London not speaking a word of English and now I’m a team leader in a call-centre co-ordinating the English, German and Polish-speaking markets,” she says slowly.
I start speaking German to her and we have a brief conversation in German. She comes to life with that little interaction, but I revert to English because my German isn’t as good as hers. It dawns on me that she isn’t comfortable speaking English.
Houston, we have a language barrier. Fuck.
Speaking slowly does not come naturally to me, but I try my best. What really starts to bother me is that she just doesn’t get any of my humour. All of it is lost in translation. I crack a joke, smile and she just stares back at me, blinking and trying to understand what I just said. I can be quite punny and I don’t know if other languages and cultures incorporate puns as part of their humour; I’m starting to think not.
I’m also starting to think that humour is a vital ingredient in “chemistry”, that rare and elusive thing that when two people meet there is positive electricity between them. Baltic Babe and I were great in the humour department; I’d have her literally in tears of laughter once an hour. She’d beg me to stop because her sides were hurting. I miss that and the sound of her laugh.
Sadly I can’t tell you what The Pretty Pole’s laugh sounded like because I don’t think I heard it. After about an hour conversation has died and we both just stare out at the marina, not knowing what the hell to say to each other any more. The date pretty much died there.
It was cringe-worthy for both of us. I felt particularly bad, thinking that I hadn’t been speaking slowly enough. If only her English was better. I know that it was more than that, but I still felt bad. The Pretty Pole probably felt worse.
I could see that she was a Good Girl and that she was a Giver too. I was also feeling disappointed because in front of me sits a woman who not only looks the part, but also has the moral fibre and decency of someone whom I want to share my life with. It feels like life was teasing me, dangling what I want in front of my nose and then whipping it away.
I suppose with a lot of time, patience and effort we could teach each other languages, but even then the outcome isn’t guaranteed. In fact, it’s highly unlikely because the focus of the relationship is all wrong. The realization comes to me that I’m not in the market for a project; I’m looking for a finished product. Someone whom I have nothing to teach, but only to share with. I’d happily be with a woman who wants to teach me new things. Doing new things together is fun, it binds a couple together, but if it’s all about overcoming a communication barrier, well that’s not fun.
I pay for our wine and pizzas which The Pretty Pole politely thanks me for. Walking my date to wherever she needs to get to I shall always do, no matter how bad the date. When I kiss her goodbye on a cheek outside the Tube station, I think we both knew we’ll never be seeing each other again.
On this date communication had let us down.
Never mind, I have a date on Friday night with someone who is a 99% match on OKCupid…
LESSONS LEARNED: 1) I’m not looking for a project but a finished article 2) Laughter is key to chemistry