So, I have found the perfect evening, and a companion I adore.  Unfortunately, we’re just friends.  Life would be so much easier if there were something else there, but there isn’t.

And that’s the fun of life, right?

Last night, I met my friend the think tank executive who I met on an online dating site for a movie that devastated us both.  Then we sat at the bar at one of my favorite downtown restaurants drinking jasmine pearl tea and ultimately in a booth when two friends of his had finally landed in town.  With his friends — one an art director, the other an editor — we talked about the nature of art and culture and our favorite works of art and how informed those choices are by our upbringings and it was fabulous.

I spent way too much money, as TTE and I always alternate checks as we’re not actually dating, but it was worth it.  Essentially, I spent all the money I’d budgeted for the entire weekend, so now I will stay in.  Again, worth it.

I am so inspired by conversations and activities from this week.  My commitment to being more authentically me (launched along with the renewed commitment to the Bon Vivant) was reinforced by everything with M and with TTE.  I get such energy from being around great people doing great things and my focus needs to be on those positive elements.  I need to take the time to, as I told RA via chat this morning:

we may be moving out of [planner]-narcissism phase and back into [planner]-insufferable-consumer-of-art phase
That would be a great thing for everyone, but especially for me.

I bused downtown to grab allergy meds and to sit and write at the Chic Hotel Bar for an hour before meeting up with TTE.

Late afternoon at the CHB is perfect: it’s quiet, with comfortable sofas and great service, and I can easily be alone there.  Except, I wasn’t.  I was chatted up by an older lawyer and then FM randomly walked in.  He was going to a show at the theater in the hotel with his new girlfriend (no, really) and their first choice of restaurant was slammed — as there was a big show.

Among my favorite things about the CHB: everyone thinks it’s so awful and filled with the beautiful people/rich assholes that no one wants to go there.  Which means it’s awesomely filled with the beautiful people/rich assholes and not a lot of other people.  Until really, really late at night when it’s a clusterfuck of amazing awfulness.  It’s like our clubhouse.  It is in fact our living room.

FM joined me on the long sofa at an adjacent table and I realized I’d never get around to writing.  I also realized the CHB has a happy hour.  $5 glass of prosecco? Yes, please!

It was lovely.  TTE let me know he was slammed with work and unable to join me for a drink so I agreed to meet him over there 20 minutes before the show.  The theater is an upscale arthouse built into an adjacent residential tower with a bar and decent food.  He’d gotten the tickets, so I picked up the food, so he picked up the drinks, etc.

The movie was amazing.  Devastating, gorgeous, and it captivated us.  [By the way, I’ve been posting about it to social media, so I am not going to disclose it here, but comment below or message me, and I’ll share it.]

After, he suggested we go to a restaurant I love for a drink and to meet friends of his who were flying in for vacation for a week.  We sat at the bar and drank tea and talked about art and about being the beneficiaries of ridiculously successful friends with unlimited expense accounts (or in BFD’s case, personal wealth), who enjoy great food and find us charming.  I realized as I spoke that I do sound rather spoiled, and also, like a woman who was sort of kept by a man, though I never think that I was, I suppose I sort of was.  It’s an ugly thing about me.  I had a fabulous car . . . because he paid for it.  I’ve dined in all of our town’s best restaurants because I date wealthy men.  It’s ugly, but it’s my truth.

It really is rather embarrassing.

If anyone would understand, it’s the TTE for a variety of reasons.

His friends were great — of course.  All of his friends are.  He’s brilliant and cosmopolitan and he’s lived in Europe and in three of America’s best cities.  Everyone I meet through him, I adore.  It’s this fabulous subset of brilliant, creative professionals doing amazing work and taking trips and living life.  When I think about it, I fit squarely within that group as well, despite what my insecurities (and bank account) may say.  I am someone you want to talk to about art, about philosophy, about culture, about food and travel.

My vacation from myself into less serious, less substantive party mode was necessary as I was trying to survive, which, for me, meant having meaningless fun.

Now, I am back to embracing the core of who I am.  Which, frankly is still social, but with discussions more substantive.  It’s me, but actually engaging with people on the stuff I really care about.