Posts Tagged ‘sex’

As you read in the previous post, sometimes I  want to shake off those good girl shackles and be “bad,” if only for a little while. And the perfect opportunity seems to present itself once a year in the form a handsome Brazilian pilot who shows up at my door during  the Montreal Formula One Grand Prix.

It’s the 21st century version of the play/movie Same Time Next Year but without the same emotional intimacy experienced by the principal characters, George and Doris, who meet every year for 24 years, sharing the ups and downs of their lives in a brief but intense weekend. Over time, you see how they grow individually and as a “couple.”

For the past seven years the pilot and I have passed through a smattering of weekends of mostly style and no substance and very little sharing. We as a couple seem to be stuck in a moment – the moment we first met.

Shallow you think? Absolutely. On the other hand there is no danger of drowning in something more profound, in a sea of those roiling emotions that framed our first summer together as friends and lovers. Now it’s safer for us to tread water in the shallow end of the sea of love. It’s less scary for him (he can’t swim) and less frustrating for me (forever throwing a lifeline to a drowning man).

But it’s the capacity to accept our relationship limitations that keeps us friends. We have an unspoken agreement that lets us honor the past without burdening the future with expectations. That agreement keeps us in contact throughout the year and enables us to share travel schedules in the hopes that someday our paths would cross on a bit more regular basis. But they never do. When I’m in Paris he’s in Palm Springs, when I’m in Beijing he’s in Barcelona – even with all that international travel our paths only cross here, in Montreal.

I don’t think it coincidental at all that Michael Buble’s song “Home” hit the top of the charts the year the pilot and I met. It defined us then and it defines us now.  It’s the stay/go paradox we both share.  And I know that when he turns up at my door with a box of dark chocolate covered strawberries and good Grand Cru like he did last weekend he finally feels at home and so do I…if only for a little while.

photo: © istockphoto.com/Yuri_Acurs

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Care for a bite?

Athough I have been in a dating no man’s land lately,  I have to confess that I haven’t been quite celibate.  I did unexpectedly stumble upon a tiny oasis in the non-dating desert one night this past summer.  It happened at a local salsa club here in Montreal.  I really didn’t feel like going, but a friend had asked me to teach him salsa in preparation for an upcoming wedding.

So thanks to him, I picked up my shoes, plucked up my courage, and headed for the club. It was crowded for a Monday night, but since it was early we caught a beginner group lesson.  Many dance clubs offer lessons at the beginning of the night, and it’s a good way to meet people and scope out potential dance partners for later in the evening.

What usually happens is this: a practice session is set up so that the men on the outside of the circle rotate every few patterns or sequences. The women are on the inside of the circle. It’s a good system because you’re able to dance with a lot of different people.

That evening, during a break, I noticed a young man staring at me.  We exchanged smiles and a slight greeting. Later, we danced a couple of times during the rotation.

After the group lesson, and few solo dances with my friend, I was ready to leave.  I was packing up my shoes when this young man approached me and struck up a conversation.  He was so natural about it and so at ease that after a few minutes I’d almost forgotten we had just met.  He was open and enthusiastic, and there was this sweetness about him.

Men in this younger age group don’t carry a lot of baggage.  Life hasn’t yet taught them to be cautious and calculating the way it does some of the men (and women) of my generation.  The course of the conversation with this young man was so refreshingly different that I couldn’t make up my mind if wanted to kiss him or pat him on the head.

We talked about travel, career and life in general.  His question about my three life goals caught me off guard.  I hadn’t thought about that since – well since I was his age really.  His short list was action oriented whereas mine was more philosophical.  He wanted to take time off to travel, start his own business and learn as much as he could about life.

My short list included dwelling in tranquility, having more time, spending it  wisely, and not squandering any opportunities along the way.   I’m not quite sure that he “got it” because when you’re young you always think you have more time.

Later, he offered to drive me home and I accepted.  As he pulled up in front of my building, he asked if I would like to go for a walk.  It was a balmy night, and the stars were out. I thought it would be a shame to waste such a night especially when it was one of the few nice nights we’d had all summer.  And so I accepted, but I had to do a few things first like change, use the bathroom and pick up some bottled water.

My building is like Fort Knox, with security cameras everywhere and a vigilant doorman.  So I felt comfortable inviting him up to wait for me while I did what I had to do. Max, my doorman, gave me a little smile as my guest signed in.  I returned his smile with an “It’s not what you think” look.

Except that wasn’t quite true, and I wondered if that look was meant more to convince me than Max.   I had never done anything quite like this before.  The good angel on my right shoulder whispered “Lead us not into temptation” while the fallen angel on my left shoulder shouted ”Yield to temptation! It may not pass your way again.”*

We never did go for a walk that night.  We ended up drinking iced tea on my balcony and wishing on all the stars we saw. I felt like I was back in high school.

Finally he leaned over and whispered, “I wish I could kiss you”

“You’re in luck,” I said, “because granting wishes is my specialty.”

All kinds of wishes came true that night.  He had wanted experience and got it.  As for me, it was a night well spent with someone I didn’t know from Adam.

*Robert A. Heinlein

Photo: © iStockphoto.com/oliverwolfson

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A little knowledge..


If  I’ve learned one thing since my divorce it’s  this —  When it comes to having sex,  men are like apples.  All you have to do is pick  one.  Having said that keep in mind what happened to Eve.


Photo: © iStockphoto.com/DNY59

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I go to Paris often on business but that doesn’t mean I ever take it for granted.  When I spend time in Paris, it’s as if I live there. I frequent the local markets, even though I’m only taking fruit back to my hotel room. I eat in local cafes, and I walk and read in the parks.  I feel at home there.

One Sunday evening, I decided to go to a café in my neighborhood, the 17th arrondissement, for dinner.  The waiter seated me in the window so I could watch les Parisiennes passing by – effortlessly chic in their casual attire.  How do they do it, I wondered.  There was nothing effortless about it for me. I sometimes felt like I was trying too hard to blend in – a dead giveaway if ever there was one.

I’m not quite sure who noticed who first but when I glanced up, I caught the eye of a man walking by.  He smiled. I smiled.  He continued on.

He then turned around and backtracked a few steps.  He was very handsome in a way that usually appeals to me:  tall with dark hair that curled about his neck and a neatly trimmed beard; call it Hugo Boss meets Patagonia.  He looked at me and made a sign that indicated he wanted to approach. I shrugged because really, what’s the use, I thought.

He inclined his head to try again and so I figured, oh why not.  I beckoned him into the restaurant.  After a brief flirtatious conversation he asked me out to dinner for the next night.  And I accepted.

We agreed to a time and a place, and he left, but not before taking my hand and kissing it. Just as he was about to go he turned back, smiled and said, “You have beautiful eyes.”

His name was Dominico (Mino) and he was originally from Sicily.  Great I thought – another Italian man (my past is littered with them) and in Paris of all places.   It was the Latin factor times two! Just what I was getting myself into?

The next evening, we met at the appointed time and place, and he was as charming and as attentive as the day before. Since this was his neighborhood, he took me to a nearby chic café for a drink before we were to head off to a local Italian restaurant for dinner.  We kept the conversation light as we walked and talked; it was also slightly suggestive of what Mino had in mind for “dessert.”

And while I had spent the day considering my options and thinking about what I would do, I had firmly decided that it would be only dinner this time. Since I came to Paris often, there would always be other opportunities. But I wasn’t about to show my cards too early and define the parameters of the evening because ,after all, I could still change my mind.

I learned quite a bit about Mino over drinks at the café that night, although how much of it was true I couldn’t say.   He was charming and courteous and he punctuated his conversation with just enough fleeting physical contact, without coming on too strong, to make me feel desired. He was very good, but I wasn’t falling for any of it, not this time.

I found his Sicilian bravado and self-confidence entertaining. And despite the fact that the average Sicilian man ensures that his lover has at least five orgasms to his one, it wasn’t long before Mino realized that it would likely take more than this one night to demonstrate his ethnic prowess.  Not that it wasn’t tempting;  it was, especially since the last time I had sex was – well, I don’t even want to think about it.  And although Iwas really missing the physical contact coupling brings, this time I decided to let my head overrule my hormones.

Every time I steered the conversation away from the topic of making love, because he didn’t just have “sex,” he seemed a bit more discouraged. Up until this point he had ignored cell phone calls, but it wasn’t long before he had to take a call from his cleaning lady. Apparently she had lost the key to his apartment and couldn’t lock the door.  He smoothly explained that a late-afternoon meeting with clients at his place had left it in a bit of a mess and, as such, it needed some tidying up.

But perhaps having a clean apartment wasn’t as urgent as he once thought.  Even if I had decided to sleep with him, it certainly wouldn’t have been at his place.  That was very presumptuous and potentially dangerous.  So rather than leave his apartment open and vulnerable, and since he lived in the neighborhood, I suggested that he go and lock up while I waited for him at the café.  I knew it would be a long wait.

Still, I decided to give Mino the benefit of the doubt. I gave him 30 minutes. During that time I finished my glass of wine and his, and I had a nice chat with the waiter.  And then I paid the bill.  Yes, I paid it and was glad to do so because the evening had cost me far less then it could have had I fallen for this handsome man on a rainy night in Paris.

The Almos AffairIn the not too distant past, I would have naively mistaken Mino’s intentions for true interest. I would have enjoyed my night and would have wanted more. I always want more especially when there’s none to be had.  Rather than be upset or disappointed, I was amused at the turn of events and rather proud of the fact that I had navigated Mino and my biological desires so well. That night I walked back to the hotel with a smile on my face that had nothing to do with sex – imagine that?

Photo: © iStockphoto.com/hdouchet

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In the last five years of being single, I  have had my fair share of happiness and heartbreak. In the beginning, I had a fairly steep learning curve but luckily I am a quick study. The most important thing I’ve learned is that heart is a muscle; it can be bruised but not broken. So the more you use it the stronger it gets.heartXSmall

Very early on in an effort to “get out there” and see what was happening in the dating world, I signed up on two major dating sites and one matchmaking service. In the last five years I must have met at least 70 men, all but one of whom was “as advertised.” How was it? Well let’s just say I consumed my fair share of coffee. (How do you think I got the name Café Girl anyway?)

All in all, I have to say it was a good experience. In a way, the process reminds me of a job interview and, to some extent, really, that’s what it is. I was at once both interviewer and interviewee. A handfull of relationships made it past the coffee stage to what I call, a “relationship threshold” (approximately 3 months). However, it was at that point, at least for me, that most of the relationships came undone. Either he or I didn’t make the three-month “probation period.”

I have been on both the giving and receiving end of a few exit interviews over the last five years ,and it all boils down to one thing. One of us changes their mind. It has nothing to do with what I did or said said –  mentioning the “c” (commitment) word or asking to meet his friends had little to do with it. I might have thought they were good reasons why things didn’t work out, but they weren’t.

If I over analyze the situation it’s very easy to blame myself. And I end up asking myself, “What could I have done differently?” In the end, it’s a pointless question because I realize that there’s nothing I would have done differently. It’s not a question of rejection – for once popular culture is right – it’s not me – it really is him. Or I can tell him with a clear conscience: it’s not you, it’s me!

Photo: © iStockphoto.com/FotografiaBasica

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