My friend’s wife here is trying to set me up on a date even though I have told her numerous times I don’t do set ups. Besides the obvious reason of her falling head over heels for me when I’m not interested (talk about awkward), it can affect the social dynamic if we ever happen to be at the same events hosted by our mutual friends. But more than that, I just don’t like them.
I’m a pretty confident guy. But I’ve also got a fair heaping of humility as well. Apparently that humility is rather endearing. If I wanted to go out and get a date, I would. There are lots of singles in Dubai (granted, most of them men), but there are plenty of opportunities should I deem I want a date. And I don’t need anyone trying to find one for me. Don’t get me wrong, I do appreciate the thought and sentiment. I just don’t think I’m at the stage yet where I need someone to find someone for me.
My mum tried that for years. Seriously. She got tired of seeing the string of flings, as my friends called my love life back in the day, and wanted her only boy to settle down with a nice girl. My mum knew one such nice girl. This girl worked with my mum, and when I’d come in to pick my mum up to drive her home (my mum has never had a driver’s license and my parents lived on the way to my apartment), she would always see me from behind her wall. And I was my mum’s favourite topic of conversation apparently. So when it came up that I was single, my mum’s coworker showed an interest. Mum called me up that night and told me about the “sweetest, kindest, and most lovely girl” wanting to go out with me. She was nothing like that “those types” of girls I was seeing. I needed a nice girl, in the wisdom of my mum. A girl who always brought in extra food for the cleaners and at work functions. A girl who always called her mum at lunch to see how she was doing. And mums are never wrong.
I had a general idea what this girl looked like when I met her at the restaurant of her choosing. I was there around 5 minutes when she came in, wearing a striking red dress, but not too formal or flashy. If the term smart-casual had a photo beside it, that dress would have been there. And yes, I do recall what I was wearing – charcoal grey trousers, a white shirt, and blue jacket. Yeah, I looked the part.
We make a formal introduction, seeing as though we’ve only met through the wall that separates her seat at work to the front lobby of the hotel where she and my mum worked. A quick kiss on each cheek followed, and we were seated at our table. We laughed a lot. I’m a funny guy, I’ll have you know. We talked about school, our families, how she volunteers at both an animal shelter and a soup kitchen. Mum was right; she was a nice girl. And I won’t lie, she was attractive as well.
Dinner goes better than expected and she says she’d like to have a nightcap at mine if it wasn’t too forward. Too forward? Please, she could have dragged me there by the balls and it wouldn’t have been too forward.
We’ve got an open bottle of wine and we’re sitting on my couch. We continue to laugh and talk and, for some reason, I’m still hesitant to make my move. You know, this girl works with my mum. I don’t know what the protocol is for that. I don’t know why I was thinking about protocol in the first place.
“You can kiss me.” She says, pouring herself another glass of wine.
Not one to want to disappoint, I have to oblige her. She’s a guest in my house after all, and the first rule of entertaining is to make sure your guests get what they need. Some kissing on the couch leads to some groping on the couch which soon leads to a trail of clothes heading into the bedroom. I’ll spare you the details but needless to say things are getting pretty heated. I pause, remembering I don’t have condoms. She tells me to stay where I am and comes back from the sitting room with her purse. She pulls out a box of condoms, a mask, and some handcuffs.
“You up for it?” She smiles, touching me in places that make it difficult to say no.
And colour me seven shades of stupid but I say “Yes.” Before the night is through she’s looked in my refrigerator for anything that might “excite” her and tantalize me. Apparently, all the bananas I have in my fruit bowl are too small. She tells me there’s this kind girl she knows from the soup kitchen who she thinks would be good fun, but then says she doesn’t know how to get a hold of her because she lives on the street. And still, I am undeterred.
When she leaves, she tells me she has a boyfriend, “sort of”, but would like us to remain casual when he’s out of town. I say I’m not looking for anything as serious as casual and she understands, saying “she wishes she could be as free as I was”.
I stop by my parents’ house the desk day and mum asks me how my night was. I said it went it okay and asked my mum just how well she knew this girl. Mum said they lunch together at work and always sit together at functions. My mum then asked, “why only okay?”
“Well”, I replied, “She kept me in the dark a lot of the night. But once I tied her down, she was very open and quite frankly, a little shocking”.
“Yeah, she’s very shy. I’m surprised she opened up to you at all.” My mum shook her head and asked if I was seeing her again. I said no, there wasn’t enough of a bond between us. Mum nodded and asked if I wanted some tea.
You would think I’d love being set up after that, wouldn’t you?
So, have you ever been set up?