Monday, I took my ipad and wireless keyboard and had lunch with C at her restaurant and then decided to go grab a glass of wine at the elegant 5 star hotel a couple of blocks away. They have wine for half-price then, with one of the best lists in town, and the idea of a great glass of wine and my resume sounded perfect.
It was perfect. I started with a glass of rosé champagne (for $7) and then moved on to an interesting white.
I was seated at a long table, facing the entrance. Behind me was a handsome man, also facing the entrance. We shared a waiter and, while he was great with wine recommendations, he was fairly terrible with nightlife recommendations for a man in his mid-30s on a Monday night.
There are very few things happening anywhere on a Monday, but blues clubs and jazz clubs were missing the mark.
I turned my chair a little towards him and asked, what is it that you’re trying to do?
He is English . . . a qpilot, an avid cyclist, and he had taken a day to come to this city, ride, see the sights, before his trip back across the ocean the next afternoon.
As we chatted, he invited me to join him and we talked food and wine and sports and music. He bought a glass of wine for me, and I shared the only item he’d not ordered from the menu, which was — by far — the best thing.
I am — of course — a little tipsy as i have been drinking wine and not eating.
We decide to find adventure, which mainly means that we each tab out, leave his car there at valet, after it’s stamped at the restaurant, and head back to C’s restaurant.
C and her new boyfriend are there and the four of us have a great time.
We start drinking. Well, the pilot is drinking. C pours me water when I walk in. She knows.
She also is not surprised that I left to work on my resume and walked back in with a very handsome guy.
The pilot gets a frozen margarita with an extra shot of booze, a couple of times, and I encourage him to get a Paloma, which he hates so I drink it.
We are — the four of us — laughing and talking.
C and her boyfriend, who is a country singer with a blue collar job, are charmed by the pilot. He is charming.
He is English and handsome and interesting and funny.
We wrap up there and decide to find a new place. The closest is a bar C frequents with a huge outdoor patio. It’s a little chilly — but only to me — so I sit closest to the outdoor heater that they turn on for me.
The pilot and I hold hands at the table and there is an easy affection.
C and I have a small tiff at the table. And we we go to the ladies room and talk. I ask her her opinion of the pilot. She laughs that, yes, he’s very attractive and seems great, and that it’s clear to everyone that I am leaving with him.
It’s just a natural thing.
Our chemistry is great and it’s been MONTHS since I’ve even made out with anyone. The random guy immediately after the LDF was the last guy, and I’ve kissed LP, but that’s it. That’s the extent of my sex life.
So we knew that I was likely leaving with him. In fact, that’s essentially what C said.
We wrap up. It’s still early. Maybe 10 something. C and her boy refused to let us pay for the drinks there. We split a pitcher. I had less than half a glass, and I gave most of that to the pilot.
We walk out to the curb and I hail a cab for us. We give the cabbie the address and we are holding hands again and then we are making out in the cab. And it’s great.
Granted, it’s been a while, but he’s hot and the chemistry is excellent.
We stop kissing only when it’s clear with bumpy roads that one of us is going to get hurt.
We get to the hotel and hold hands through the lobby. It’s ridiculous. He’s staying in a hotel north of town because he didn’t know and he had a room in the city in which he landed.
When the conversation comes, we realize that neither of us is prepared. So we kiss and get naked and do everything we can that does not involve actual penetration.
And it’s great.
We go to sleep and then awaken around 2 am when my allergy meds wear off. We start kissing again and we end up again doing everything we can. And it’s even better.
It’s easy and it’s amazing to be in this man’s arms as we kiss.
In the back of my mind, I am fully aware of the fact that he is a handsome pilot who travels internationally as a job. Like my long distance fling, simply by the nature of his job, he is exceptionally unsafe as a sexual partner.
So. Many. Women.
So. Many. Women. From all over the world.
He doesn’t know that I am safe or clean. He just knows that we each limit our exposure without question or discussion or argument.
We don’t discuss it. We are not prepared so we don’t go there.
Every time we awaken, we kiss, passionately. And curl up.
He is a foot taller than I am and significantly taller than anyone I’ve dated in a while. Curling up with him means tucking myself into his ridiculously long torso. I feel — even with a stranger — safe and protected.
He had intended to awaken early and get a ride in, but we sleep until 730. We decide to cab back to the hotel, and then he will drive me home from there, despite the fact it is out of his way. I was a little concerned about the logistics, but he made it easy.
The five star hotel made it easy, too. The valet took forever because they’d already pulled the car from the garage before we had arrived. We stood awkwardly and made small talk about whether or not he’d return for the huge entertainment thing happening here in a few weeks.
[The thing during which the LDF and I are planning to see each other.]
Of course I encouraged him to come back. Despite the fact I am likely otherwise engaged with the LDF.
When the car arrived, his pilot’s jacket with name and rank was on the passenger seat, confirming everything he’d already said.
We drove the few blocks from the hotel to the place where I am staying with the reporter. He kissed me in the car and I gave him my number and email. I have no idea why, it just seemed like a good idea. He’d left his phone in London before his trip.
I have no idea if I will ever see or hear from him again, but that was not really the point of this adventure.
I am glad we skipped intercourse, though I am curious about how the mechanics would have worked as he is enormous, because we had a far more intimate, far more focused evening.
Every time he climbed back into bed, we kissed and he held on to my hip. It was romantic and tender and wonderful.
I do not often take those kinds of risks, but when I do, I am always rewarded with a wonderful evening.
I do not often put myself out. I am very targeted when I choose to let someone into my world — and into my bed.
What was less surprising to C — or our friends who heard about it subsequently — is not that I picked a man up at a bar, it is that I picked that man at that bar . . . the only one who was perfect for me. C’s boyfriend said with admiration when the pilot was away from the table “nice pull!” Because picking up an English pilot, who resembles Benedict Cumberbatch, was actually an impressive feat. He could have wandered into anywhere and had his pick of anyone who was out.
It was clear — given our later bedroom romp — that randomly hooking up with a woman was not his intention that evening. He was unprepared for it in every way from the lack of condoms to the ironing board still out to papers and computers covering the bed.
I — hadn’t even shaved my legs in like a week. (I’ve been moving and living in jeans and yoga clothes.) I was also not looking to meet anyone. I was looking for a great glass of wine and a quiet room.
What I found was exactly what I actually needed — a handsome, interesting man, a great story, pleasure, and random fun.
As I am dealing with everything else — poverty, homelessness, unending stress — those small moments of adventure and levity make all the difference.
It is also a nice reminder that I am still attractive to the men I find attractive. He was in his mid-30s given the timeline of employment, a striking presence, and the only man there I would have wanted to speak with.
I am considered a very attractive woman — and I am usually mistaken for someone 5-7 years younger than my age. [The next night, two bartenders from a nearby steakhouse were sitting at my table with C and they were both amazed by my age: “you’re really hot for someone in her early 30s” and did not believe I am actually 10 years older.
I have had an interesting career, I am well-educated and worldly. For whatever reason, I don’t encounter normal people. I encounter exactly the right people.
It’s the thing about which my friends tease me mercilessly: it’s never just a guy — it’s the rock star or the athlete or the best in his field or the charming man-about-town.
I don’t date “normal” guys. They do not like me or find me attractive. I can be a princess, I can throw tantrums, and I am annoyed by certain things. A strong man also prone to bad behavior can manage through a brief what-the-fuck-why-did-you-take-me-to-a-restaurant-where-they-don’t-clear-my-plates-in-a-timely-fashion meltdown.
I have — on more than one dating occasion — muttered: I hate this why are we here. At very elegant places where people would love to be ignored for 10 minutes while waiting for water.
So, if you want to date me, you have to be used to certain things about me, my lifestyle, my friends, my occasional bouts of attitude. But there is a lot of upside, too. I am dedicated to making sure everyone has the best time always. I am funny and smart and relentlessly positive.
And occasionally a complete diva.
I really don’t know why I attract who I do. I just know that –out of all of the elegant wine bars in this city — I ended up talking to and picking up the only man I would have wanted to speak to on that evening.
I date within a very narrow range because it is where I am comfortable. Those are my people. I am their type, too. The hot bartender will never look in my direction. The handsome venture capitalist: he will pursue me hard, no matter who else is in the room.
I have never figured out what the signal is, how we know to find each other. We just do.
It could be location-based: if I am in the land of $20 glasses of wine in a 5 star hotel where Oprah stays when she is visiting, then I am likely to meet people who have similar taste and interests. I am likely to find people who find me attractive.