Good Boy, Bad Boy (2015) – Part 2

Bad Boy

girl

The city of Cordoba finally came into view. It has been 20 hours on the bus from the North of Argentina but there is no better feeling than heading to see someone you like; every minute, every hour bringing you closer to where they are.

I must admit: I hoped I would meet someone else. Yes, I liked Fran, and yes, we had some sort of weird connection, but he would never be someone I would end up with. He spoke no English. He had never had a girlfriend. He wasn’t a real gentleman. I would never trust him to be faithful to me. There were many things that I just couldn’t and wouldn’t tolerate. When I pictured my perfect guy, I didn’t see him in my head. If I had met someone else, I would have probably reconsidered this trip. After all, I was heading to see someone I had no future with. There were two choices: either we would end up fighting and what we had before would be ruined by this new memory or I would get so close to him it would be more painful leaving. Neither of these seemed like a good option.

Yet, here I was – on the bus, knowing all this and also knowing that I wanted to see him. These two weeks, he was all I thought about. What’s more, he became a kind of friend too. He wanted to know everything about my trip. He wanted to help me with my new video. Our conversations kept me glued to the screen when I should have been out meeting new people, yet, he was the one I yearned to talk to.

girl-texting-on-cell-phone

“Che boluda! Como andas?”

I felt and looked horrendous, after our two sleepless night when I was attacked by bedbugs in the little village close to Bolivia. There was no way I was staying with him as he suggested I do. The other reason I was scared of staying with him is that now there would be no way for me to look independent. He would get used to my presence and no longer be scared to lose me. As I said, I seemed to care too much about how this guy felt.

So my German friend and an amazing confidante Tina (poor girl!) and I ended up booking a hostel in the center of the city. We finally took a shower, and I texted Fran to let him know I have arrived, but he was at the river outside of the city which put a bit of a dumper on my day. Why did he leave the city when he knew I was coming? After we returned to the hostel from fruitless shopping, I got a message from him offering to grab some food. Since I just ate, I offered to go drink something with Tina, his cousin and I. However, he didn’t reply for an hour. So this was it, I said to my friend, now that I was here he is no longer interested. I lay on the upper bunk miserably unable to do anything else but talk about him, tap my foot and check my phone every two seconds.

When he did reply, he was cold and told me if I wanted to go to a bar, I should just do it. I didn’t want to play these games. I want to see you, I told him. As soon as I did, he offered to drive back to Cordoba.

“Mia, please just say yes. You will kill yourself if you don’t” – told me my poor friend who has been listening to stories of Fran for weeks now.

I could hear his voice before I saw him. His strong Cordobes accent asking for me. His sun-tanned face grinning at me with the happiness of a child where I again tried to play it cool.

In the car, he explained the situation:

“I didn’t know what you wanted! I thought you were staying with me and then you switched to a hostel! You told me you were tired so I thought you wanted to sleep, but you offered to go to a bar with some other people. “

He took my face in his hands and kissed me. Just like that we were back in Mendoza.

That night after spending some time in the bar, mostly staring at each other, I went to his place – a high condo tower in an island of towers.

We spent the night together and he drove me to the hostel the following day, both of us dead from the night before. I ran back to tell Tina about my night, and slept for one hour before receiving a text from him asking me if I wanted to go to a city on the lake with him. He had to go for work and I would accompany him there. I was dead tired, but the thought of spending the day with him on the lake sounded great.

Mostly I had to accompany him to different places as he went about his job, so granted, I was bored out of my mind. There were many negative things about Fran that definitely outweighed the positive. On the walk, I talked about some guy, possibly trying to make him jealous though I can’t quite remember. All I remember is he suddenly decided it was a good idea to begin flirting with the girls at the “information” booth.

“You are obviously trying to make me jealous” I pointed out.

“Just trying to show you it can be done so easily.” He grinned mischievously.

villa_carlos_paz_cordoba

Carlos Paz

He would kiss me and grab my hand, then withdraw and not crack a smile for a while. When he was like this I didn’t bother trying to play clown and entertain him. He wanted to be like this? I would do the same.

As we sat in the car, he grabbed a bit of fat under my tricep with a playful smile on his face. I did the girly thing and tried to hit him, but the truth is it didn’t infuriate me. I knew what he was after. He enjoyed the push and pull of our temporary relationship. He enjoyed playing around. There was a certain element of sexual tension created by that though I will agree – it is not a healthy one. But as he grabbed me and I hit him, the more I hit him, the more he enveloped me, with me wanting him right there. I think it was the element of dominance present in all our interaction and that was the other thing that kept me wanting him over and over again. He was not nice.

That evening, I checked out of the hostel and moved into his place.

“You know what” He told me as we lay in bed “I am constantly aware that you are gonna leave soon and it keeps me hanging.”

Sleeping with him every night, I grew close to him. The sex that started out so terrible, has now evolved rapidly. I loved the smell of him, the imperfections he had, his soft lips, his eyes as he looked at me, the way he touched me – both sensually and possessively. The way he tried to make sure I would get an orgasm (as it is really difficult for me), almost going so far as to organize a daily ‘activity’ so that I would feel comfortable with him. The selfishness he possessed in daily life was replaced to utter selflessness when it came to pleasing me. He would completely forget his needs just to focus on me. I think again, it was his love of challenge that also drove this need. Either way, I began feeling so connected, that when he would wake up to head to work, kissing me and cuddling close to me before he put on his work clothes, I would feel completely and utterly alone, missing him immensely. The loud lock of the door was always somehow a reminder that this, whatever it was, would end really soon.bed,bw,coupling,dontwakemeup,love,sleep-930e8c23bd4b9c852ed236ced6a5b3ca_h

He began calling me “his woman” after I cleaned up the house and cooked a meal the first day of our “life together”. Of course, the chicken didn’t seem edible to him, and I might agree it wasn’t amazing, but he was a complete machista when it came to certain things. In real life, I doubt I would have survived one day being married to him.

He would do certain things that drove me crazy. As we went out one night, I remember, he poured beer first to his cousin, then to himself and only then to me. I stared at him straight in the eyes:

“You have no manners.”

He ended up apologizing right away, enjoying my lack of tolerance. I didn’t talk to him after, a twisted enjoyment of a certain argument that would lead to makeup sex. And yes, that night, as we came back he lifted me up and carried me to bed. It seemed like he couldn’t wait long enough to undress me.

The other day, as we met in the center, he told me I was beautiful then shut down and walked around grumpy.  The final straw came when we approached the car and called out to me like I was a cat.

“Do not call me like I’m an animal” I told him calmly with a strong edge to my voice. I was always careful to put my words simply (not hard since Spanish is not my first language) and be angry instead of wailing like a woman. Again, I ignored him in the car and he threw many looks my way.

As we got out, he kissed me softly. “I’m sorry.”

“Of course you are. You know exactly what you are doing.”
“I guess I am” He admitted.

“You like me getting mad, don’t you?”

“In a way I do.” He smiled. “I mean, that means you have your own rules, that you won’t take crap from me.” He didn’t want to push it far enough, but he definitely enjoyed the sexual tension, the certain drama that established attraction. Shouldn’t you already have attraction? Would ask most of you. Yes, we should have. We shouldn’t have played games, but Argentina is a country of games, the game of power and a certain part of me enjoyed it.

And the funniest thing is that even through all of this, he never truly pissed me off. While many nice guys I have dated in the past irked me so much, I would start arguments myself. I explained this strange phenomenon to him after his little argument. We loved discussing little psychological things like that.

“Exactly!” he exclaimed. “You see what I mean? When someone is too nice, you take advantage of them. It starts to get boring”

Did he try to make me jealous? I must say, Cordoba is a city of beautiful women and while you are always aware that there is someone gorgeous in front of you, you must not let it show. On Friday, we headed to his cousin’s condo for some pre-drinking. As the main character of my new video on a single guy in the city,  Alex, his cousin decided to invite two girlfriends of his. One, Laura was gorgeous. I mean, as soon as I saw her my heart dropped.

I was aware that he was observing her and at the same time conscious of my reaction. This was the moment I would not show any kind of jealousy. After a few moments of feeling a bit uncomfortable, I turned the situation around. I focused my attention on her and began telling stories about my experiences. Soon enough, everyone at the table tuned into my story. With all this attention energizing me, I glowed as I talked. I could see his face as he observed me. He found me the most interesting person there, it was clear.

His cousin struggled to find a girl in the club, and as he called one girl after another at six in the morning, Fran exchanged a look with me that said “poor guy. Thank God we are together.”

“You know what is weird” He told me the next day “I always look for something else. I go to a club and search for the prettier and the other… but with you, I only had eyes for you.”eye

Weird? You might ask. What kind of effing compliment is that? Of course he should have eyes only for you. He has just started seeing you and on top of it all, you are leaving. And yes, you are right. Of course it’s a ridiculous compliment. But it was an honest one. Fran was a player. And him saying he could see no one but me said a lot.

I could feel he was falling for me. It was the fact that I was still this independent girl that would leave, travel by herself. It was the fact that I wasn’t from there. And the fact that as opposites, we still somehow clicked.

The last night, he enveloped me in his arms.

“I love how your passion for what you do makes you glow. You are so special to me.”

That morning I cried. I took out the old sarcastic letter I wrote to him, turned it over and wrote another letter.

ElRapidoArgentinoInt1804CN_2

Best buses in the world!

He was at the station wearing a yellow dress shirt. I had tears building up in my throat and couldn’t wait to get on the bus so I could finally let them out. Those final minutes before you know you will never see this person again are the worst to bear. As much as you want, you can’t breathe enough of them. You want to hurry up time and just leave as it is more painful waiting it out, finding words to say. Nothing meaningful comes out anyways. He slowly kissed me goodbye, taking time to read me for the final time with his eyes.

“I’m really sad, Mia” he told me. “I will miss my little wife.”

With one final smile I got on the bus. I sat like that, looking at him through the dark windshield. A fountain of tears he wouldn’t see poured down my face. Suddenly the bus began moving back and all I remember is him smoking and looking at me driving away. An unexpected wave of pain covered me. I never thought I would get as addicted to him as I did. Driving away from Cordoba I couldn’t stop my tears. It rained the whole night. I cried most of the night until I finally tuned out and fell asleep. I felt so extremely alone. After a week of sleeping in his bed, inhaling his clean smell, his stubble against my skin  I was now completely and utterly single.

Why was I putting myself in the same situation time and time again? Was I some sort of masochist, addicted to the finality of all my romances? I yearned just to have a boyfriend. Someone I didn’t have to say bye to, someone I could travel with and not from.

“I just read your letter” came the text “I feel so much emotion. I have no words. It was weird sleeping without you. No one woke me up because it was cold”

fiesta-en-la-pedrera_e6575d49cbedeabb63f173df23fe9021

Carnaval en La Pedrera

I was now in Uruguay, surrounded by beautiful Argentinian and Uruguayan men. It is not often you see so many bronzed, hot men in one spot, but here I was for the carnival. I finally distracted myself, yet sometimes the pang would come unexpectedly. I thought it would all be gone by now. Yes, I liked him, but the truth is there was nothing special about him. I doubt I would have noticed him among this football team of men.

“There is no point to any of it” we both wrote to each other.

“Actually” he texted “we shouldn’t even be talking by now”

“I agree” I said. “But I’m not sure I can just stop like that”

That night he sent me a voice message telling me nothing in particular, but that nothing in particular told me he missed me. I cried listening to it.

“You confused me” he wrote next time “I don’t know what to do anymore. I miss you. I want to travel with you.”

“You want to travel with me?” I asked “You can’t even come to Buenos Aires to visit me.”

I took a bus to Iguazu falls, then came back through Buenos Aires to stay on the seaside city of Mar del Plata when he texted me he might be coming to Buenos Aires in one day. Sure I wanted to see him, but changing my plans just to see him one more day before I had to leave the country for good seemed like it would cause me more grief than happiness.

Next day, when I finally decided that I did in fact want to come back, he told me it was too late. The chance to come to the city has come and gone. The next morning I woke up feeling empty and missing him with a great ache in my body. How was I still feeling this? It was not possible. It was the fact that he was now distant from me. The regularity of our whatsapp messages: photos, nicknames, voice clips have started to diminish.  I could visualize him going out to a club and picking up women, having sex with them in the same bed we shared. It was a painful visualization.

It was now me initiating most of the conversations. Yet, he still wanted to see me. He begged me to come over, saying we had a week left and could be together that one week. I just couldn’t imagine myself spending my last week bored out of my mind in his condo, waiting for him to come home from work. I wasn’t a housewife. I couldn’t imagine myself doing the exact same thing, of being with him, with now a more painful thought – I had to leave right after. Before, I still had plans ahead of me: travels, people and now there would be nothing else left. I couldn’t say goodbye once more, knowing I would never see him again.

I offered a compromise of sorts – he takes 2 days off work and meets me somewhere in between. If he was willing to do that, it wouldn’t just be me doing what he wanted.

He didn’t bother to reply to this request.

Good Boy

laplata

La Plata

The night city of La Plata came into view from the window. Now I wasn’t excited or eager. I sat in the bus holding back tears each time I thought of Fran, with a feeling of nervousness and a big question in my mind: Why was I doing this again?

Alfie and I began talking two weeks before I had to leave back. I guessed it was my photos with Fran that didn’t make him too eager to write to me. So one day I wrote him, and then he started writing me and just like that, we re-established some sort of a connection.

I found Alfie attractive and sometimes even more interesting than Fran, but I wasn’t eager to see him. I wanted choice number 3 – not Fran, who would just hurt me, and not Alfie.

He lived near Buenos Aires, in La Plata and he invited me to come down for a couple of days. I started thinking about it. I knew he would offer me romance, some beauty during my final days in Argentina. We already knew each other. I knew he wouldn’t hurt me. But what if being with him would be a constant comparison to Fran? The kisses, the looks, touch – it wasn’t him I wanted.

I guess I didn’t want to be alone those last days. But repeating the same old with Fran just didn’t feel like the right option.

Alfie jumped up when he saw me get off the bus. We kissed each other. He looked the same: boyish face, tall and built, less bronzed than on vacation. Our conversation was really easy. Actually it was way easier than it was with Fran. He kept on asking me questions, I joked around. Maybe this was a good idea after all.

He took me to a Tapas restaurant where we shared the tastiest plates of food I have tasted since coming here three months ago. Meat, potatoes, bread and empanadas really quickly lost their charm. I think I was starting to turn vegetarian.

“So, let me tell you where I went.” I talked on and on, knowing I had to explain the Fran situation right away. “From Mendoza I travelled up North and after that came down to Cordoba. You remember Francisco, right?”

Alfie nodded, an ironic smile on his tight face.

“Well, I met up with him. He’s actually kind of a friend now.” I added really quickly.

Alfie laughed. He didn’t believe me.

“What?” I looked at him. “He is. You saw photos of us, didn’t you?”

“I did. I was really surprised. I remember you told me nothing happened yet I was seeing you all over Facebook.”

“I get it. It must have been weird” I agreed, not knowing what else to say. Really, there was no need to explain it to him. It seemed like both of us knew that this, whatever it was, was second best to something else. Maybe it was an energy radiating from me. Maybe it was him. The point is, it was far, far different from the first night out in Cordoba with Fran.

luxury-big-house-design6

Fifty shades of white

As we walked out on the street, Alfie grabbed me to him and kissed me passionately. Finally, it felt like we could let loose and get some sort of intimacy. Unfortunately, the rest was not so great.
His sister’s house was something out of 50 Shades of Grey: minimalist white and black, sparkling counters, huge spaces, enormous windows. As soon as we walked in he walked me to the sofa, pushed me on it and began undressing me. Moments later, I was against the wall as he excitedly rubbed himself all over me. Fran made very little sounds during sex, Alfie made way too many sounds. The groaning, the dominance, the “look at me” as we had sex, the disconnected look on his face all reminded me of a porn clip. It’s not that I felt cheap per ce, as he always made sure I was okay, and no, he did not use whips or hit me like the infamous movie, but it was zero enjoyment for me. There was a lack of intimacy, a lack of playfulness, a lack of sensuality that I experienced with Francisco. After we were done, I stood in front of the mirror in the bathroom crying. I started considering going home the next day.

But as we lay in bed, him pressed up against me, I felt something for the boy. I mean, he was different than Fran, but I should enjoy the time with him as it was.

“If you have a diary” he told me later “Do you have a little space reserved for me?”

It seemed like he knew he was my second best and maybe that affected how this short trip ended.

The next day we spent at the pool, having an interesting conversation about everything in the world. We had so much more to talk about than I ever did with Fran, but missing was the flirtation and playfulness. He never touched or kissed me, but as we went upstairs we ended up having sex again. I was sure now – I wasn’t enjoying any of it.

He dropped me off to visit a girlfriend I met the same time in Mendoza ( who knew the whole story) and picked me up afterwards.

“Let’s watch a movie!” he suggested grinning to me as we drove back.

“Sure!” I exclaimed, feeling a little surge of emotion for him, this boy who I couldn’t really understand.

We lay down to watch the movie, my legs on his lap, but it was too long and he had to drop me off at the station at 6:30 am. A few hours in I told him I was tired.

“Do you want me to accompany you?” he asked, the gentleman he always was.

“However you feel” I answered, giving him a chance to step in. He had no problem telling me what to do in sex.

“I think I’ll finish it” he answered, resolutely.

I kissed him goodnight.

woman-crying21Fran would have continued it and we would have ended up having sex on the couch. Alfie did no such thing. Our kiss stopped short and I left across this empty house feeling equally vacant. I sat on the floor of the bedroom, crying once more. I didn’t want him. I didn’t want more porno sex with him. I wanted Fran, with his impish smile and his possessive touch. I wanted our messy bed, the messy sheets we changed together, falling asleep on his semi hairy chest, his puffed up lips in the morning.

I went to sleep alone and saw Alfie get into bed hours later. He knew I was awake yet didn’t kiss me goodnight or hug me to him.

“Do you maybe want to drop me off later?” I suggested in the early morning. I was dead tired and it would make little difference to him.

“No, it’s better we go now” he said firmly.

We talked about nothing in particular and kissed quickly at the end. There were no more beautiful words from him.

He did write to me when I returned to Canada but his texts no longer included ‘kisses’ or ‘hugs’ at the end. Whatever started out as warm, has finished with polite pleasantness. A girlfriend of mine looked at his face in one of my videos and said “But he’s cold, Mia. He’s impassive and emotionless.” I agree that this boy who seemed “good”, “romantic” and a “gentleman” now seems to me troubled and withdrawn.

And do you think Fran with whom I shared a bit of history acted any different? I was flying through the Chilean airport when I finally had a chance to connect my phone. He knew when I was leaving and yet, never had the decency to write me a goodbye text. Hurt, I told him so. He offered me an excuse of thinking of me and wanting to text me, but it was clear this, whatever we had, whatever connection we shared has extinguished.

This pendejo (asshole), as I called him warmly, who seemed my imperfect, sometimes irritating ‘bad boy’… yet someone who constantly inquired about my day, my plans.. who seemed part of my life there in Argentina, has proved to be just that – an asshole. A boludo. A selfish guy who, after not getting to see me again, decided it was not even worth it to inquire about me. To send one sentence. One word.CheBoludoLogo

Now, writing this I am hurt. Editing his cousin’s video, I see his stupid, regular face and want to cry. I know this will pass. I know that a memory of him is the memory of my world in Argentina, of a life I will never experience. I know that his city stands somewhere, his apartment still the way it was when I last saw it, his clothes scattered all over the chair. And yet, while that apartment stands, I am here – miles away from him.MapaArgentinaCanada

Good guy, bad guy. It is the person you find a connection with. And when you do, they are your guy. And that’s the best feeling in the world.

PS. And then Fran and I found contact again.

Advertisements

Good Boy, Bad Boy (2015)

The story of my fling with two Argentinian guys and one connection that is hard to explain.

dating“Hey, Canadian!” He yelled to me mischievously in Spanish as he sprinted up the stairs of our hostel. I smiled to myself. This guy was exactly the type of Argentinian that was fun, easy going and a bit of a player.

I have arrived to Mendoza, the wine region of Argentina a few days ago, from Buenos Aires. I loved the feeling of the small city, surrounded by mountains and my hostel – a little resort with a pool in the middle. I turned thirty exactly one day ago and though I have to admit I did cry on the eve of my birthday, consoled by a thirty one year old Argentinian girl, the day I actually turned thirty – I felt like finally there was nothing to dread. The day I dreaded to change my life came and went and I was still the same. And that I was actually doing what I wanted. I’ve always had an incredible interest in the Argentinian culture and it has been the first country on my list for ages. Now, I was here, with three months to travel, speak Spanish, meet locals and focus on the dating trends for my Youtube channel.

My main focus was chamuyeros – the men that smooth-talked women for the game of seduction. Here in Argentina, they were a penny a dozen and though fascinated by the whole concept, I wanted to show any guy who tried it on me that I was aware of his tactics.

mendoza inn

Our hostel

This guy seemed just that.  A fun loving, easy-going chamuyero. Within moments of moving into my dorm with his cousin, he chatted me up in a very self assured manner. Moments later we were drinking wine with them on the terrace. Right after, he had the decency to tell me to change into something nicer for the club. It was pushy and presumptuous, while at the same time kind of nice. Seemed we skipped all the niceties and headed straight for saying what we thought. He did for sure.

Francisco was nothing special. He was somewhat taller than me, with dirty blond hair, liquid caramel eyes that seemed to read mine, full lips and a very Italian look to him. Even though he came from a line of Southern Spaniards.

But instantly, without any thought or reasoning I was attracted to him. Now thinking about it, I am sure it was the way he carried himself. Self assured, relaxed, sarcastic and mischievous. And his way of looking at me, like he was really seeing me.

We formed a little group of us: me, two of my European hostel friends and his cousin Alex. On the way to the door, another guy came up to me. Alfie just arrived with a helmet in his hand, later turning out to have motorbiked all the fifteen hours from Buenos Aires. He was tanned with dark hair and dark eyes, tall and had a body to die for, from what I saw as he hung around with his other friends (shirtless). Instead of arrogant as I initially placed him, he spoke to me in a really friendly and well-mannered way. I immediately invited him to join us.

So here I was – two guys I found attractive and not sure which one to go for. Fran was not someone I would ever consider seriously, while Alfie was both attractive and a decent guy. So decent, he didn’t carry himself with the same ease Fran did, even though he had more of a reason to.

Bad Boy – Monday

“Ugh, this Fran is such a player” I told my English roommate, one of the Europeans who joined us “Look at him chatting girls up”. I was jealous. I couldn’t take my eyes off of him strutting around confidently, looking like the club – boliche was his playground. And wearing a pink t-shirt of all things! He had to be a douche-bag.

A few minutes later, Fran grabbed me by the hand and offered me to go ask the DJ for another song. As we walked away, he stopped in the middle and simply began dancing with me. Alfie threw a look at us.

“Let me get you a drink” offered Fran in a bit.

“Sure. I will go to the bathroom and join you after” I lied. I didn’t want to be too easy. I didn’t trust this guy. I didn’t think he was a good person. I thought he was arrogant, and I wanted to make him wait.  At the bottom of my heart, I wanted to be different. A bit aloof and unattainable.

So I did. I danced and danced as he sulked by the bar staring expectantly at me.

A girl who he earlier talked to and who for the record turned out to be a lesbian, approached me to find out if I was interested in Francisco.

I remember telling her, very convinced: “No, nothing will happen with this guy. He’s just a player and I hate players”.

But let’s be honest. I’m not a bitch. I’m very bad at toying with someone’s emotions and his look of desperation combined with the fact that Alfie was now chatting with my English girlfriend, completely ignoring me, spurred me to walk over to the bar and take a seat near Fran. Soon enough everyone, Alfie included (not without giving me a bit of a look) left, leaving me relieved. I knew Fran was a player, but I justified it as “Whatever, I’ll just have fun” to my English friend who nodded in (somewhat of an) agreement.

It was obvious he was gonna try to kiss me. And he did. Three times I pushed him away. “Not yet”, “Do you know how to wait?” “I said no”. He was a typical pushy Argentinian and having done lots of research on them, I was more than wary. I mean, he barely waited to make a move and even when I turned him down, did not act rejected. Any North American guy would now be swallowing more beer to feel like a man. Here was this guy who could care less. Actually he seemed to enjoy a challenge, which is why I gave it in the first place. But secretly, I wanted him to kiss me.  When he kissed me for real, I was hooked. It was a strangely sensual, unhurried kiss… It was a personal kiss. Something you share with someone you like. I can’t explain it, but there was something deep in it. It sent a wave of tingles down my body.

We kissed, danced, and he even managed to sing me some song during the dance. He was a natural with no inhibitions and someone to have a bit of a fling with, but nothing more. Nevertheless, I was scared to lose control with him. From this point I became the girl I wanted to be – fun, independent and sexy. For some reason, it was natural with him. Pushing his kiss away at first separated me from the other girls– I knew it. If anything would happen, it would be by my rules, not his. I knew Argentine men. I didn’t trust Argentine men. They were good with women. He was good with women. I didn’t want to be the one he would use and forget.

Back at the hostel, he got into my bed and offered to ‘lie there’ with me, but as much as I wanted to have him near me (and as adorable as he was cuddling next to me), I told him to go back to his bed. Not before I made out with him against the wall.

biking

That, without the frilly dress

The next morning I woke up extremely happy. Sure, I’ve kissed lots of guys in the past, but there was a surge of excitement pulsating within me. He woke me up. At the tender age of thirty, I felt younger than ever. I went biking in the park, singing to myself and looking around at everything in wonder. Thank you, Francisco, no matter if you are an asshole or not.

Next day, they had to switch hostels. Not only that, they might leave to another city if the car starts working again, Fran mentioned, not forgetting to look at me directly with a certainty in his eyes – I know you don’t want me to go. They did not end up leaving. Instead he asked me to give him my phone number, in a very old fashioned way – on a piece of paper. I took this opportunity to act my sarcastic self.

“Did you want me to write you a letter?” I asked

“Ok” he smiled slowly looking into my eyes in that way he did.

I took the paper and wrote down how special he was to me. However, with my voice I showed that in reality, he meant nothing to me. (a month later I would write a different letter on the back of that paper.) Smiling, with no further comments, he kissed me goodbye.

Good boy – Tuesday

asado_4

Mhmm… asado

That evening I kept on waiting for him to come through the door. Sure, it was a fling or whatever, but I missed seeing his stupid impish face. We were eating asado (Argentinian barbecue) in the hostel and Alfie has barely exchanged two words with me, but I noticed him sitting on the other side.

When I was finally bored of all the conversations around me, I went to lie down on the couch. Minutes later, Alfie sat by me.

“Mia” he looked earnest and young (five years my junior). Though Argentinian, Alfie resembled a quarterback in an American football team. Sometimes I could swear he just stepped out of a Freddie Prince Junior movie.

We started talking and after some time it became obvious he 1. Liked me 2. Was jealous of what happened with Fran 3. Really didn’t like Fran

“He’s just such an arrogant asshole. I hate guys like him and I don’t know what happened between you two, but I think you are much better than associating with guys like that”.

“I know, Alfie.  He’s no more than an acquaintance. How can I take him seriously?” I lied of course. What would you do if you had two guys you were interested in, have been single for an eternity and had one guy fawning over you while the other didn’t even bother to text? They thought they could use me? Hah, I would take advantage of the situation and be the one to play a game. It was fun and it kept me from falling for any of them, especially Francisco.

wallA conversation later, we ended up in the park as he lifted me up and pressed me against the wall. He was definitely the one girls would call hot, and more so someone I would envision having a romantic fling with. However, that kiss lacked something. And that night I thought about Francisco’s stupid face with his long eyelashes, caramel eyes and mischievous grin.

Bad Boy – Wednesday

Next morning, Alfie went rafting and Fran came by to pick me up to the go the thermal baths. He texted me right after I got back from the park to say he wanted to see me. No matter what happened with Alfie and no matter the fact that this guy had the word ‘untrustworthy’ written all over his forehead, I grinned as I read it.

Thermal Baths

Thermal baths!

He stood on the sidewalk smiling at me as I walked by to him, kissing him on the cheek. We headed down to the thermal baths in the mountains with him smiling to me through the windshield as he drove the car. We spent the day cooking asado, swimming in the cold pools and tanning. He refrained from kissing me, but as we swam through the tunnel, he finally pushed me to the wall and kissed me sensually. Seeing as there were people coming, we stopped, but his hard-on prevented him from coming out of the water.

After we ate, he hinted that they were going to play cards with some other guys and I instantly left to tan. The last thing I wanted was to look like I needed him. I wanted to be as independent as possible, always at the brink of leaving, never lingering. As I lay down on the grass, I knew I was into him. I reenacted the cave kiss in my mind, feeling the tingling feeling every time I thought of his lips touching mine. It was an exciting feeling. Something I haven’t felt in a long time. Seduction, a bit of danger, the sense of possibility and yearning.

He came to find me after and we headed to the hot baths where we lay together and talked. We were close but did not kiss. He looked at me intently as I talked, but all of the actions were unhurried and calm. I yearned for him to kiss me, but the closeness of our faces without it was even more of a turn on. Soon enough his cousin found us and smiled in a bit of a surprise. I assume we looked like a couple, cuddling together in the bath.

They switched to the hostel right by us. My French friend Simone, who now knew bits about the story, as well as two Argentine girls in my room, told me what I was doing would be impossible to pull off.

“Mia” she said in her extremely strong accent “If they come tonight for the dinner, you have to choose one boy. Which boy you like?”

“I like him” I told her. “I’m extremely attracted to him. But I don’t want to have sex with him.”

“Why not? You say you are attracted. What is the problem?”

“The problem is that is exactly what he wants. He is chasing me to get sex. Once I give it up, he’s gone.”

“But the boy seems like he likes you.”
Now” I pointed out. “He likes me now. He likes other girls too. I just don’t trust him.”

“And so, Alfie is a better choice?”

“Alfie is someone I trust. And even if he leaves, I know I won’t hurt like I will with Fran.”

Sometime during this conversation, Alfie came by to kiss me hello. He looked cute and boyish. Someone I might have actually wanted to date. Tanned, toned and earnest.

I wanted to have my Argentinian cake and eat it too.

 Good Boy – Wednesday

That night, Fran disappeared on me again. I felt down.  He was right by me! He was on the other side of the wall! And yet, he didn’t care what I was doing or where I was. He didn’t care that I was hitting it off with another guy. The reality was that even though the game was fun, I just wanted to see him. I’m not the type to date two people at the same time. Date or fling, whatever that was.

“He is an asshole!” exclaimed Simone, sounding as French as ever. “Why he is not texting you. Better to stay with Alfie!” she said.

The other girls – Rita and Elvie, who spoke virtually no English like pretty much every Argentine I met, including my main characters Fran and Alfie, and who were now completely tuned in into my soap opera grinned at me as I walked out of the shower.

“There was a cute boy at the door looking for you.” Said Elvie.

I found Alfie in the patio.

“I wanted to know if you wanted milanesas.” He told me with a genuine look in his eyes.

“Aw.. thank you. “ I said. “I just ate.”

“I hope you are going out with us tonight.” He looked at me earnestly.

I was. Thankfully for my plan,  Fran never came into the hostel to have dinner, so now I was free to get away with my outing with  Alfie. A great guy, who actually came into my room to inquire if I wanted food. A part of me was disappointed though. I really expected to hear from Fran tonight. To know that he was interested and was not a player I didn’t trust.

So we ended up going to the club. I wore a dress and heels and Alfie was tall and built in a collared shirt. There were lots of girls, but he told me he could see no one else but me. And as sweet as that was, I couldn’t help feeling I was in some cheesy prom movie.

Yes, like a cheesy Freddie Prince Jr. movie

The cheesiness.. oh the cheesiness.

“That is so disgusting” said Simone. “I do not like this Alfie guy. He sounds so too much!”

Yet him and I danced all night and I almost killed my neck looking around for a shorter guy with the stupid face of Francisco. A few times my heart almost dropped – was it him making out with this girl? Touching that girl? I knew he might be doing the same somewhere else.I just didn’t want to face it. I missed him. My heart was not in the whole romance with Alfie, yet, somehow – it was him I ended up having sex with that night.

Ok, let me explain. We got into some stupid fight over paying for a bottle. Him and his friends were each buying a bottle and since I was sharing drinks with him, he assumed I also wanted to join in on the group ‘fun’ of buying booze. I thought that was completely tactless and anyways, he explained it was a cultural thing but I couldn’t understand it. After the fight, we both felt more honest and less perfectionist (on his part). There was a nice real part of him that I saw and as he invited me to sleep near him, I actually said yes. I trusted him, I knew he wouldn’t hurt me. He couldn’t hurt me, because while I did like him somewhat I had no fear of being too involved.

However, it was far from good. He was big. I mean, really big. Also, hard. Not just his penis, but all of him – well defined, muscular, sporty. Incredible, no? Who doesn’t want a tall, tanned, sporty Spanish looking man? But the sex was something out of a porn movie. Wham, bam. Wham bam bam. It mostly hurt, I didn’t relax or enjoy any of it. I felt like I should have been filmed. Afterwards, he passed out near me and I sneaked out of the room feeling like the cheapest woman ever.

I knew I chose the wrong guy. So what if he was safe? I still wanted Francisco. That night I fell asleep with thoughts of his his long eyelashes, bedroom eyes, slow smile and the sensual way he kissed me.

Bad Boy – Thursday

“Senorita” blinked a message on my Whatsapp.

I didn’t respond. Make him wait, for not getting in touch with me. Plus, how the hell am I supposed to respond to that?

Minutes later I saw him waddling over to my table. Why waddling? He sometimes looks like a penguin when he walks fast.  Awkwardly he said hi to Alfie’s friend, who was chatting with me and sat near me. We sat there hypnotized, our eyes never leaving each other’s .

“How was your night?” he asked.
“Great. Really good” I answered, showing with my secret smile that anything could have happened with me. Ironically I wasn’t bluffing.

“You seem busy” he said. He seemed awkward around me now that I was so poised, acting busy and like I had no need of him. We always played this game. He stood up. “It would be nice if you showed some creativity and invited me to go somewhere.”

“Ok” I smiled, looking up at him. “I will think of something”

How about a lake?”I texted him as he left.

“Come over!” he answered back. I put some makeup on, my face literally glowing. Through the consistent lack of sleep, I looked fresher than ever. I suppose feeling and drama do that to you. Oh and vacation of course.

We took the car and drove up to the mountains of Mendoza. He held my hand in the car. The atmosphere of our so called relationship seemed to shift. Here was a guy who was spending his whole day with me. Would he do that with someone he just wanted to have sex with? He has not tried anything yet. He looked at me with real emotion in his eyes. This was something that couldn’t be faked. We lay by the water and just looked at each other, as he caressed my face and lifted the hair from my face. I loved being with him: the fresh scent of his skin, his full lips as he kissed me, the slow smile that spread on his face as he looked at me. I was falling for him.

....Saddly the water only looks blue from a distance - a metaphor for many things in life

….Saddly the water only looks blue from a distance – a metaphor for many things in life

On the way back, he suggested we head to the hotel.

“No” I said immediately.

“Why not? I like you. You know that, right? “ He looked at me, while keeping his eyes on the road.

You like me. You like other girls. You like everyone. I still don’t trust you.

Maybe that’s why he was so romantic with me in the car. In order to get me to sleep with him. And yes, of course I wanted to, though I just spent the night with another guy. I wasn’t ready. I wanted to do it by my own rules, at my own time. I knew that if we went up to the hotel and he disappeared, all the effort I put into playing it cool, into being different, into waiting it out would fail and he would hurt me deeply. I was too invested to just ‘have fun’.

“So what do you want?” He asked.

“Let me think about it” I said.

He dropped me off and I ran up to my room, pretending not to see Alfie. Alfie was leaving the next day and here I was, completely ignoring him. I sat on my bed.

“What do I do, girls?” I asked my roommates who lay on their beds listening to yet another story of mine. I hoped I wasn’t annoying them. But I guess I replaced television somewhat.

“But you want to have sex, Mia” said Simone. “Why not do it?”

“Because I still don’t trust him! What if that’s the only thing he is after?”

“But you want the same!” exclaimed the Argentines in unison.

“Yes! But I want it to mean something. With Alfie, it was something I knew I wouldn’t regret because I wasn’t so invested. Here, I like the guy. I mean, I really like him. If he disappears afterwards, I will feel horrible.”

“Then don’t do it. You just answered this for yourself.” Answered Rita, who after seeing photos of Alex, Fran’s cousin decided to join me for a beer at their hostel. I knew that meant I wouldn’t see Alfie but I was so preoccupied with thoughts of Fran I couldn’t care less.

Francisco greeted us coolly, no smile on his lips. He brought us a beer and while Alex talked to Rita, we sat in silence. He barely had two words to tell me and then told me that I was the one that was being boring.

“You know” I told him. “You being an asshole, a boludo, is not going to help you. I really don’t appreciate you acting like this.”

He somewhat nodded. Fran was a very conscious guy. He picked up on cues perfectly. He knew well what he was doing.

“Did you want to go watch a movie?” he suggested.

“Let’s go” I agreed. I just wanted to feel close to him, but his response to what happened today really bothered me. Lying on the couch, we started kissing. There was that closeness that we shared. What was the truth? When we were together it seemed we had something but I always had a nagging doubt it was all just for sex.

After falling asleep twice, I told him I was heading back to the hostel. He didn’t even pretend to smile. “You can stay with me if you want” he said. I ignored the remark and headed back. He blew me a kiss, his face as sour as a grapefruit.

Good Guy – Thursday

Frustrated and upset, I walked by Alfie’s table and threw him a quick look. Registering my presence, he immediately came up to me.

“Hey” he said.

“Hi” I smiled.

“You look gorgeous” he admired my red dress. Fran never even mentioned how pretty I looked. It was nice to be appreciated.

“Thank you” I hugged and kissed him on the cheek, thankful for someone who I didn’t have to play games with.

“Look, I’m sorry I fell asleep last night. I wanted to see you today but it seemed you were gone. I just felt like we never actually had the time to just talk.”

“Let’s talk.” I said. I kissed him on the lips, suddenly overcome with emotion for this genuine guy. I was suddenly tired of playing the guessing game with Fran and wanted something simple and straightforward.“Hey, you know, I’ve never been on a motorcycle. It would be great to get on one with you.”

“Sure” he smiled. He put a cask on me as I got on the back. “Hold on to me.” He pushed the bike back and off we went, riding around the half empty dark streets of Mendoza city. Glistening sidewalks, swaying palm trees, my red dress, my arms on his torso and his hand caressing my knee – all of it as if written from my dreams. It was beautiful. He was a beautiful person. Sadly, it was not him I wanted. motorcycle

We sat in the park talking about lives and on the way back he stopped the bike and bought me a variety of chocolates. We almost parted with a kiss, but still ended up having sex. I know it is weird that I spent the day and evening with one, then was off to have sex with the other. In a way, I wanted to feel power. I liked playing with two people, because I love the drama, because I enjoyed the thrill and because that kept me away from getting hung up on one of them. And now that one of them was going, I was left pining over the one that was left. Like I pretty much was all along.

Bad Boy – Friday

Friday he never got in touch with me. Alfie went off, not without hugging me and telling how incredible I was. Now I was no longer part of an intrigue. I was alone and so very crazy for Francisco. I looked at my phone the whole day, moving it from one hand to the other, turning it on to see if there are any messages I might have missed, my heart sinking a little bit more with nothing from him. And of course, there are your girlfriends who tell you that nothing will happen if you text him. So I did. And he invited me to the pool. And I played it cool and said I would see him later. And he called me a histerica – an Argentine term for a person who changes their mind a lot.

And he never got back to me after that.

I couldn’t concentrate on anything. There was a fresh wave of new tanned men in our hostel. One, Italian douche-bag Francesco kept on pouring more wine into my glass. But after forcing myself to enjoy what was out there, I suddenly couldn’t be around more people so I went up to my room and lay there, staring up at the ceiling and resisting the strong urge to cry. It’s kind of hard to with a lack of privacy in a dorm.

This was ridiculous. I mean, who was he for me to cry over?

blue haired girlIt was the fact that he was seconds away without the need to see my face, to touch me, to spend more time with me before we both left. The fact that he would go to a club and meet another woman. The fact that I would never sleep with him again. I finally fell asleep and woke up early in the morning with thoughts of it.

Bad Boy – Saturday

Sitting at my laptop, I got a message from my Argentine girlfriend. I recounted her the story and called him a jerk for disappearing like that. She put a different spin on the situation, telling me that he actually seemed like a decent guy. Any other Argentine would have already given up and not invited me anywhere, yet he was consistent in his contact with me that that said a lot. I guess I wanted to be convinced so I didn’t think twice about messaging him.

“I’m translating my video from Spanish to English. Want to come over and help?”

It was better than the standard “how are you?” It made me sound independent and yet someone who could use his help. For some reason, sending this message felt right. Just because we didn’t see each other, didn’t mean I couldn’t be the first to initiate contact.

He answered back in an hour.

“I always want to help. Be there right away.”

He was swimming in our pool when I came down. I made breakfast and he joined me in the kitchen, looking over at what I was doing.

“So, what is the plan tonight?” I asked, scanning the kitchen for a pot.

“Well, I was going to spend time with my cousin. Unless you have another plan” he waited expectantly.

“You can spend time with him or you can spend the night with me.” I blurted out. This was completely unlike me. This time, though, it felt like I was making the choice to be with him, not vice versa and it no longer made me feel like a victim.

“Which one would be more fun?” He flirted.

“Depends on your definition of fun” I answered back neutrally, not meeting his eyes. I knew I had a certain power over him. I could feel his attraction for me. For the independent, fun and playful girl I was when I was with him.

He laughed at the reply.

We watched the unedited copy of my video about “Argentine smooth-talkers” with a serious face.

“I don’t agree with how these guys pick up women.” He finally said. “In my opinion, in order to get a woman interested you shouldn’t comment on broad things like beauty. Lots of people are beautiful. Instead, you should focus on a specific personality trait. Something that makes this person stand out.” He focused his eyes on me.

We headed to the pool, meeting up with his cousin there. I was scared to find out anything about last night and he was clearly interested in making me jealous.

“My back hurts” he told me “I think it’s from the girls of last night.”

The fact that he tried to make me feel jealous that obviously meant one thing – either nothing happened, or he wanted me to know something happened. Either way, I refused to get jealous and laughed it off.

He was into me.

It got clear in the pool. His eyes scanned me constantly. He would come over and kiss me. He would nuzzle his head against me. Lying next to me, his light brown eyes seemed to almost read mine. It was like we didn’t need to speak.

We did that too...

We did that too…

On my part, I continued being a bit unreachable. He commented later on that I would never stay long enough, always leaving him first to go swim or lay down. It was a trick of mine to show him that I was not his. That I didn’t depend on him. That he should appreciate my presence while I was there. In reality, I was scared that he would get bored. I’ve never known this fear with anyone else, but with him I couldn’t just let go and be. If he talked to any other girls, I would close my eyes or switch my attention to something else, so he could see I didn’t view them as competition. Always he would come back to kiss me in front of them,seek me out or smile at me. He pushed the jealousy just far enough without making me feel angry.

We decided to meet for drinks, so I got ready and put my dress on. They were still shirtless, eating pasta, when I came in. He stared at me, finally saying “wow”. I told them they could come see me when they were ready. I would be drinking at my own hostel.

I was playing a drinking game and checking my phone every two seconds when he finally showed up, dressed in a collared shirt and jeans. He sat next to me.

“So what is the plan?” he asked soon enough. “Will you stay with me tonight?”

“Yes” I answered simply. I wanted to, no matter what happened after.

He seemed to exhale a sigh of relief as if he was scared I would say no. He wouldn’t have pressured me had I said no. He never pressured.

The plan was to go to some swanky club on the outskirts of the city. I just wanted to stay with him, but it was Saturday and his last day so I agreed to it. But as we took separate taxis on the way to the club, me in the front seat, barely listening to the chatter of the girls in the back, I was no longer certain I trusted him again. What if now that he knew I was interested he would look for someone else? What if he was an asshole in the club?

On top of it all, the club was eighty percent women. Not just women, but beautiful women with careful makeup, glistening long hair, perfectly assembled clothing. I told myself to breathe – I had to believe I was hotter than anyone else. He was at the bar getting drinks and it irked me that he never asked me what I wanted. He was trying to make sure everyone was having a good time, but was all over the place. He would come and dance with me one second then leave to do something else the next. I felt second best. At one point, after his return to me, I pushed him away when he tried to kiss me. I was starting to get pissed off and I didn’t want to be.boliche

After this, he pulled me away from the crowd and we danced together, under the open sky of the club. Finally, we were together and I felt the connection once again.

“I hate you” he told me, his eyes on mine.

“Why do you hate me?” I asked laughing.

“Because it’s easier to say this than anything else I want to say.”

We took a taxi and told the driver to drop us off to a hotel on the way. They dropped us off in the parking lot. We spent all our money and on the taxi and he had barely enough to cover the hotel. LOVE HOTEL. That was the name. I’m not even kidding. We had no food or water and couldn’t stop  laughing at how ridiculous this all was. As our kissing escalated in the parking lot I joked that when the hotel staff would come and get us, we would be done. He looked at me.

“I love how much we have shared together. It feels like I’ve known you forever. ”

And yes, the truth is that by now we had a much stronger bond than Alfie had with me. It wasn’t romantic and perfect like it seemed to be with Alfie. It was just a real connection. It was completely imperfect, and that made it stronger.

love-hotelFinally we picked up our keys. There was romantic music playing from the radio. Thank God for no rose petals. I asked him to please turn the music off as this was extremely cheesy. He seemed confident as he waited for me on the bed, but the whole thing was so pre-planned, that both of us were awkward. He couldn’t come for ages. He was going soft. The sex lacked the fire of our kisses.

“I’m sorry” he said afterwards “I’m just nervous”

“Nervous because you like me so much?” I teased.

“Yes” he answered simply.

It was ironic really. With Alfie and his words of romance, you would expect slow lovemaking. Instead we humped like two Duracell bunnies. With Fran and his lack of romance, you would expect the wham-bam sex. Instead, the experience seemed slow, soft (not just his penis) and close. While the sex disappointed, I loved that he enveloped me in his arms afterwards.

“I love sleeping with you like this” he told me.

However, it seemed like our time limit was two hours. We barely got a chance to cuddle and have sex one more time before we were asked to leave. On the way back into the city, I half slept on his shoulder as he caressed me, watching the sun rise over the mountains.

Bad Boy – Sunday

He came to see me after our nap in separate hostels. We went back to the pool and lay side by side kissing and looking at each other. Soon, he came to tell me they were leaving. He looked at me in the eyes, reading me and I looked back at him. We didn’t break eye contact for at least one minute.

Then we started kissing, ending up having sex in the bathroom, which I must say was a definite improvement over the Love Hotel as there was no more softness to be had.  We ate pasta at their hostel and he fell asleep, at which point I left.

After a short nap, I texted him to tell me when they would be leaving only to get his text apologizing for not telling they already left. I was angry at him for not saying goodbye.

“I hate goodbyes” he answered “but I am sure, actually I’m hoping I will see you in my city really soon.”

We talked almost every day for the next two weeks.

Momentary Illusion – The Puerto Rican (2013)

446011_f520An quick obsession. A quick fantasy. Then waking up.

Luminescent eyes – that was the first thing I noticed. They were the colour of the Caribean sea on a sunny day. And they lit up his whole face. With his bronze tan and white smile, he looked like he just stepped off of the big screen.

I was in Puerto Rico with my dearest brother with whom we fought every day about one thing or another. The biggest argument of all centered around my video. Recently, I have started my own International Dating channel  and part of my trip to Puerto Rico, besides getting away from the severe Canadian winter, was interviewing people to find out the whole appeal of Latin men to women. I was trying to find sleezy, over the top Latinos but all I found were regular guys who seemed just as lost about women as Americans.

Isla Verde Beach

After begging my brother endlessly about acting as the videographer, I decided I would take matters into my own hands and walked around the streets of Isla Verde to film taxi drivers and bartenders. And now, exhilarated by the thought of finally doing something with no help from anyone else I ran onto the kite surfing beach where my brother was hanging out near his kite waiting for the wind. Kite surfing was just as annoying to me, as my Latin man episode to him.

To help me out a bit, he pointed to a shack on the beach and told me I could interview one of the surfers there. From a distance I saw an attractive guy in a purple shirt and sauntered over to recruit him.

“Would you be interested in doing a video?” I asked with little hesitation. How much easier it is to start a conversation with a “real” reason for it! However, I literally couldn’t tear my gaze away from his sparkling eyes, that crinkled in amusement and some interest as he saw me.

“Sure” He answered in an almost perfect American accent.

“You are Puerto Rican?” I asked.

Livin’ La Vida Loca!

“I am” He smiled. Tanned and bright eyed, he looked like a beautiful mix of European and Latin. Something like a (non-gay) Ricky Martin.

We continued with the interview during which he confided in me (and the World) that Latin men make the best lovers and that Puerto Rican girls are his preference out of all women. At the moment, I was only observing him as a very attractive object for my documentary. I thought that if I had any ratings to boost, he would be the one to make it happen.

Once we were done, I tried to prolong our contact by telling him to look over the release form and asking questions as he started signing his name. Turned out Franko was of German descent, went to a boarding school in the USA and worked as a doctor, not as a kite surfing instructor as I initially thought.

He was extremely attractive in the way he held himself – self assured, calm and collected and at times he would look at me directly and a beautiful smile would spread over his face. What bothered me, however, was that he would also look into the distance when talking which made me mimic him and try to look away as much as I could, so as not to appear too invested.  And he never offered to meet up even though I let him know I had no plans for that Saturday night. I might as well have written a sign on my head saying “Single and Looking”, I felt so obvious. Finally, just as I was about to leave, he asked me to take down his number so we could meet that evening. Still, it wasn’t like he asked me for mine.

Kind of like that, but with dark hair.. and no flower

Kind of like that, but with dark hair.. and no flower

Did I mention I had two days left? Oh fate, thou art unjust indeed.

Then, as I was sitting on the beach with my brother, he sat near us. Turned out they met prior to our Latin interview, and began discussing kite surfing since they were both obsessed with it. Though in the words of my brother, Franko was terrible.

“The guy just constantly goes against wind! How can you like someone who can’t learn to kite surf?”

Yep, going with the wind is definitely an important quality for a future husband…

Franko didn’t even look at me as he talked to my brother and when Alex got up to get something, he literally waited two seconds to leave himself. I just sat there, completely dejected. Both of us came to the conclusion that Franko might be gay. He did pay way more attention to my brother. Though at the bottom of my heart I knew – the guy likes girls alright, just maybe not me.

So why push it, right?

Well this is where my sense of reason fades away and the only thing that remains is the need to be with this person, regardless of the circumstances. It has been so long that I felt something as crazy and as instantaneous as I did with Franko, that I wanted to lose myself in the feeling.

Old San Juan

Old San Juan

That evening I was heading off to Old San Juan with my brother and we wrote to Franko to invite him out. Turned out he had a family function and only got back to me later saying he might not be able to make it. I danced salsa with another guy (who really liked me by the way) and desperately waited for the song to finish so I could check my message from sparkling eyed Franko. I have never known that salsa songs take like ten minutes!

While he couldn’t make it, he texted, he would love to see me at the beach tomorrow. I dismissed the message as him being very polite and not actually wanting anything with me and sat the rest of the night crying my eyes out of the deserted beach.

“Please” I said to no one in particular, possibly God, who is most likely too busy to listen to idiotic complaints like this “Let me at least be with him a bit, even if I get hurt.”

Wish granted.

Enjoy my child. But only until the morning!

Enjoy my child. But only until the morning!

The next day I came to the beach more self assured and calm, which always works to my advantage. As I stepped out of the water in my bright pink bikini, I noticed a guy eying me not very discreetly. Turned out it was my luminescent eyed guy.

“Mia?” He asked. I looked up. “Sorry, I just didn’t know if it was you. Didn’t want to be a creepy Puerto Rican.”

He sat near me and we talked about nothing in particular until my brother called him to help launch the kite. Still, that look in his eyes at least proved he was interested in me.

Later on, as I was filming scenes on the beach he called out my name again. We talked a bit, during which I asked him to be a star in my video. Then I muttered about how dirty that must have come out.

“I am leaving to eat” He stood there smiling at me, his eyes lighted up by the setting of the sun. He usually looked so confident, but now it almost seemed as if he was nervous. At least I wanted him to be. “I would like us to see each other tonight.” Of course, by us he also included my brother. I felt he wanted to invite just me, but couldn’t bring himself to do it.

I said bye to him, filmed a bit, then came back to find him still standing there smiling in an adorable way.

“So” he said “do you still want me to be the star of your video? What do I have to do?”

“Hey, you know what you can do?” said my brother coming up “You can go pick up girls on the beach and Mia can film you.”

I almost smashed the camera in my brother’s face. Of course the guy can pick up girls. All he has to do is look at them with those gorgeous eyes and smile charismatically.

“I don’t think that’s a good idea” I stated. “Technically it should be me he is picking up. I am the host after all.”

We decided maybe we would film something later on and stayed around flirting like there was no tomorrow. Hah, finally I knew for certainty he was interested! The feeling was incredible. The only thing that I really didn’t enjoy was how part of his flirting involved telling me all Latin guys were “built like Black guys down there.” Obviously that’s not true and clearly he meant himself and wanted me to find out. Coming from a doctor, I didn’t appreciate it. I thought he would have more class than that. But at that moment, any desire of his to attract me was welcomed by me. I just wanted him to like me.

We finally parted an hour later. Though my brother was invited, I let him know this trio of ours would be awkward and he should conveniently feel tired so I could leave him at home. He agreed but not without some fuss.

“You know what you are getting yourself into!” He pointed at me as I was doing my makeup back at the hotel. “Don’t cry tomorrow when you get hurt. It’s like banging your head against the wall over and over again and not learning!”

I knew I would get hurt. I was confident I would cry. And I still wanted this. As I sat there, waiting for him, my hair pulled back in a ponytail and my skin glowing from the sun, I felt alive. Anxious, sad, curious, excited, yearning… Every feeling was heightened. I think that all life is comprised of moments. Little moments, significant moments.. but at the end of the day, maybe that’s all we will remember. I think I will remember these moments the most. The ones where my heart beats quickly.

Feeling alive

Feeling alive

He picked me up in a silver Mercedes and we drove to Old San Juan, where we walked out to walk a cobbled street to an outdoor bar. So far, the conversation lacked emotion.. Sure, he told me about his childhood, asked me questions about mine, even gave me some history on San Juan.. But he didn’t smile, hold my hand or even look at me much. It felt quite official.

3327755224_7dece8071c_b

Cobbled Stone Streets of Old San Juan

But as we sat down at the bar, without even starting to drink, our conversation quickly turned into personal. We talked about our love lives, families, wants, dreams… And at one point, when he asked me what I looked for in a guy, I tried my best not to blurt out – you. But I think he figured it out. As I looked at him: his slow smile, intense gaze, the fact that he bore an uncanny resemblance to Stefan (see the German), I knew I was head over heels. Though now I think I was just obsessed, just as someone might be over an actor in Grey’s Anatomy. Fitting, no?

He even told me he used to take Xanax for anxiety, as he used to get very anxious while studying for medical exams. Apparently he didn’t share this a lot, so I felt he could confide in me.

He said  that he wanted a relationship, children, that he would provide for his wife, but she could work if she chose to. I laughed and actually said “Marry me”, to which he responded with: “Move to Puerto Rico.”

As we had another drink, he told me he didn’t want me to leave. He would come and visit me in Canada. I gladly accepted the proposal.

As we walked over to the other bar, he repeated it over and over.

“I really don’t want you to go”

“Me neither” I sighed.

Then that thought escalated rapidly, and he proposed something I hoped for desperately.

“Stay here for a few days” He offered. “I can pay most of your ticket and we can travel.”

“You are crazy!” I exclaimed. At the moment, I felt like I was in a chick flick. This was the perfect night, with a gorgeous guy, in a foreign country and he was offering me to stay! I could fly.

“I know, but it would be great. We could travel the island. I do have to go to my family’s place for New Years, so you would have to come with me.”

“Are you sure you are not just saying this because you are drunk?” I asked.

“No, I thought about this yesterday and I am sure. I will talk to your brother and we will make all the arrangements”

And now he was offering me to meet his family. This was incredible insanity and I agreed immediately. Finally, it seemed like my life was getting somewhere. Maybe he was “the one”? Now I cringe when I write this.

Fantasy

Fantasy

He told me he liked me as soon as he met me that day on the beach and I told him I felt the same. We kissed and kissed… But what surprised me was there were no fireworks in our kiss. Thinking about him, I expected a gust of passion. This was just… okay.

And then I got drunk. I am Russian and can drink without losing my head or blacking out. I don’t know how I got so wasted off of three Cuba Libres and one shot of rum, but I don’t even remember getting to the car. What I do remember is him opening his car door so I could puke out the water on the street. He was extremely sweet and supportive about the whole thing, holding my hand, kissing me on the forehead and telling me he has seen way worse. This is the worst state I have ever been with with a guy. And him, out of all people!

We had to also pick up his sixteen year old cousin. I don’t even want to know what he thought of me when I barely squeaked “Hola” before running for the bathroom.

“You are staying with me” he told me as he parked the car.

I just wanted to go home and sleep but at this point I was in no state to argue. Or to stay in the car any further. I wished I stayed classy.. Well as classy as I could be at this point and ask him to drive me back, but I felt so much closeness between us, I naively thought it wouldn’t make any difference.

More nothingness, and then I remember him getting me a new toothbrush, water and his T-Shirt. I put it on and sank into his huge bed. I was awoken out of my stupor by his kiss, or was I awake before it? I can’t recall. All I know is that we were kissing, and then he was kissing my body. Please don’t judge me girls, as I did begin to give him a blowjob. Honestly, I don’t know what was wrong with me! I knew I wasn’t going to have sex, yet I was doing this? I didn’t finish it and he pretty much jerked himself off. How romantic this evening was.. Wow, indeed. Of course at this point I was naively thinking we would have many more moments, seeing as how I was staying and everything.

We slept the whole night in each other’s arms. Even in the morning, every time I would turn over, he would follow suit with his arms around me protectively. I woke up early, both dizzy and confused: was I really staying longer with him in Puerto Rico? I was dying to.

As he woke up, he tried again to make a move, and when I said no concluded aloud : “We did not have sex” as if that wasn’t obvious then proceeded to get out of bed, to go to the bathroom. At one point, I actually thought he was gonna come in with breakfast, but he came back and told me I could get dressed. He just wanted to finish playing Fifa video game with his cousin and then we could go.

No mention of the ticket.

We drove back uncomfortably. His hand was caressing my knee but I knew that he was just doing it to be polite. Whatever he said or meant last night was gone just like that adoring look in his bright eyes. My heart sank. He didn’t even have to say anything, but I wanted to make sure anyways.

“Those were some crazy things we said last night…” I looked straight ahead, afraid to look at him.

“Yeah. I mean.. we don’t know each other so well. Maybe it’s better if we stay in touch and I come and see you in Toronto” he threw me a look and caressed my knee again to make me feel a bit better.

All of the images of us dancing on the beach, bronze faced and carefree, just like visions of me sitting at the table with his Puerto Rican family suddenly vanished and I now knew – I would be back in the winter tomorrow morning. The surreal dream he has shared with me was only that – a dream. I would have stayed if he simply said the words. I suppose some things are too good to be true. Perfection doesn’t exist and he was definitely not perfect. The way he quickly discarded me showed just that. No apology, no sincerity.. I felt like we were now strangers, and hey, we really were all along.

“Are you okay?” He turned to me as I sat there staring into space. I tried to say something, anything, but I was just at a loss for words.

“I’m just tired. Sorry” I smiled.

“We will see each other at the beach, won’t we?” he kissed me a brief goodbye.

sleep,lonely,,bed,girl,alone,drugs-05e2e83f94238f6c24775bdcb9798e12_h

Reality

Once he was out of the hotel room where he dropped me off, I sat on the bed and began wailing. Sure, I barely knew the guy, but how often does it happen that you fall so hard for someone and feel like your dreams have finally come true just to have it all gone the very next day? I’m sure most of you have been through worse.. but it still didn’t lessen my pain. And now I was leaving this beautiful city for minus twenty temperatures, while he was still here – tanned, beautiful and able to look at as many bikini clad bodies as he wanted to.

My brother, a smug know-it-all, just laughed when I recounted the story to him. “What did you expect from a Latin guy?”

I did see Franko on the beach. He approached me by kissing me as a boyfriend would do. All of the kite surfers watched us with smiles. They all knew about my project and my fleeting romance with him. I played it cool, following my brother’s advice to be happy, but I feel I smiled too much and was too peppy, so much that even he got a bit thrown off. In reality, I have only consumed one dry bun full of guava and cheese. I didn’t care what was in it, as long as it could stop the dizziness. I had no appetite. I was anxious. But I wouldn’t show it.

Parts were okay. We took photos of each other. We kissed under the towel. He came by to look for me a couple of times. I gave him a massage. He told me he wanted me back with him at his condo. He looked at me with some emotion, though it was difficult for me to predict what it really was. I couldn’t figure him out. I was addicted to his face, his manner of talking, but I knew this would be the person that would drain me emotionally. But what did it matter? This would be the last time I would see him.

At the end, he simply walked up to be and kissed me.

“I wish I met you earlier. Stay in touch” and walked away leaving me standing there completely dumbfounded and at a loss for words.

On the way to the airport, while crying my eyes out I received a text which said “Already miss you!” Sure, it made me cry with joy, but at the bottom of my heart I felt he didn’t mean it.

I wished him a Happy New Year next day, while at a party back in freezing Canada, where I couldn’t stop thinking of this weird bright eyed boy. He only replied to my text message today, two days later.

You know, I think I finally reached a point in my life where I can say – you are not worth it. Obviously he doesn’t even live here in Canada, so that’s a given, but even if he did, it would never work. Sure, he makes my heart beat, sure he looks good on paper, but at the end I want someone who wants me. Someone who would ask me to stay and not back out of it. Someone who looks in my eyes and actually sees me. Someone with whom I don’t have to play the game of who cares least. Someone with whom I feel a genuine connection and so far I have not met this person.

But you will be the first to find out when I do.

PS. I will also refrain from getting into bed with a stranger. Be it a gorgeous one or not. Some things are better be left a mystery and I think I have learnt from my mistakes never to repeat it again.

The Confident Spaniard (2013)

Tres-Metros-Sobre-El-Cielo-tres-metros-sobre-el-cielo-27970844-1600-1067

A story of obsession.

Confidence is one of the most attractive features a man can have. Looks, we get used to. The good looking, insecure man will only hold our attention for so long. But what about the regular guy that has charisma, a sense of mystery and inner confidence? That, girls, is what gets us hooked.

Hugo had all three qualities.

I was dancing on a rooftop bar in the old area of Panama City when a curly haired guy approached me, rather swaggered over with the most relaxed confidence I have ever seen.

the bar

the bar

“Whoever the DJ is, he should be shot.” He confided in me as if I had known him for years.

The song playing was: “Tonight I’m Loving(Fucking) You.” Loving was the clean version of the song. I guess Enrique Iglesias thinks love is the synonym for fuck. That, or thinking for him is as overrated as good singing.

Hugo’s manner put me at ease immediately, so I laughed and asked him if he was Argentinian. He had an accent in Spanish I couldn’t identify. But it did sound charming.

“No, Colombia” he smiled. “Don’t I look Colombian?”

“You are Spanish!” I finally realized. That’s where the Spanish lisp was coming from. Argentinians always talk with a sh, like plasha instead of playa.

At first Hugo was just a regular guy. Curly black hair. Dark eyes. Boyish look. Tall. At the first glance, attractive I suppose, but nothing special. It is the way he stood there, confident to the bone, nonchalant and sarcastic with a slow smile and a mysterious aura about him. He had a feel of the ‘bad boy’ but he didn’t try to act like one. He simply knew that he oozed sex appeal and that meant more than a leather jacket and a motorcycle combined. I was so drawn to him, I actually gave him two phone numbers. One local and one Canadian for texting.

He wrote me a message that night but I decided to play it coy and wait a day or two. Except that the next day, during a trip to the caves, I dropped my phone in the water and as destiny (or luck) would have it was now unreachable. If you don’t count phone number two, that is.

evening-casco-v1

Casco Viejo

A week later, still phoneless, I went out with Nadia, a blonde Russian with whom we were inseparable. We were quite sick, actually I think we had a fever, but I forced her to leave the house for a ‘drink’ which turned into another drink and yet another drink… It was late and we were heading home, through the old part of Panama, when who do I see, but my bad boy Hugo and another Spanish friend of his heading our way!

Somehow, my girlfriend being the flirt she was, already met and kissed Hugo’s friend that evening while withdrawing cash. Don’t even ask me how that’s possible. Now, he came up to her and almost immediately they started making out as if they were in a room and not a street.

Hugo and I were not. Instead he was trying to understand why I never replied to his one message. I told him the story and gave him the number of my Panamanian cell, even though he had to have it already.

After taking it down (again) he moved closer to me and I slightly leaned back on the car behind me. I was dying to kiss him. But he clearly enjoyed torturing me, knowing the power he had over me. What he did next was the most seductive thing I have ever experienced, and the irony in that is that it was not even foreplay. He took my face into his hand and brought his face to mine. Then he lightly kissed me, and just as soon as I thought he was going to go further he backed away. He leaned in again, now more aggressive and pulled away slightly. It was getting more and more passionate by the second and I have to admit, I loved the teasing.

I realized then that all of us are suckers for anticipation. We love a man who has the power to tease us, to keep us intrigued and yearning. And this is why, we tend to go for the ‘bad boys’. We want to experience the passion, the seduction, if only once in our lives, even if we know it will be accompanied by pain. And by the way, I tested the Spaniard’s technique on guys and it works like a charm. As soon as you back away,The-seduction-of-mystery they literally pounce on you. (Except for Theo, the Virgin who asked me what was wrong)

We kissed and kissed until a car drove by us and a man screamed: “Get a room”. Except it was in Spanish, which made it even funnier.

Hugo invited Nadia, her kissing friend and I to eat. He sat in the front of the taxi and I ended up in the back with Nadia and the Spaniard practically glued to each other.

Finally we got out and as I looked around I realized that Hugo lived five minutes away from me in a building ironically called “Madrid”.

clamsWe all ended up back at his place which looked like a dump but he did end up cooking a delicious meal of mariscos (seafood) at 4 am in the morning. Nadia couldn’t stop commenting on how good it was, while I sat there with what she later described as a dumb smile pasted on my face. I don’t even remember if it was the alcohol or being around him that made me act this way. Actually I didn’t even understand half of the things he would tell me, due to his heavy Madrid accent. It was all corathon, tranquila tia and joder.

Nadia and her Spaniard disappeared soon after they finished the mariscos. I suppose they were proceeding to their second meal of the evening. That left me alone with Hugo, who instantly suggested he walk me home. Aww, right? Well, that was before we stood in front of my building and he decided to invite himself up.

I should have said no.

Instead I said yes. Actually I told him he could come up but there would be no sex to be had. Which, if you have read my stories is an unfortunate, over-used line with me which works only half the time. At this point, I have realized that it would only make sense to prepubescent boys.

First I wanted to show him my roof. Seriously, my roof was amazing. I would sit there some nights just listening to music and overlooking the bright skyline. Other times, I would cry over a guy. But the best part was the little pool which couldn’t be used so much for swimming as for soaking there or romancing, as in this case.

Hugo got in the water as I sat on the ledge in my red shirt and black skirt. He swam to me and started taking them off. No questions asked. It was hard to complain when it was done in such a confident and sexy manner. When I ended up in my panties, I lowered myself into the pool. The slow seductive kissing from earlier was now much more heated as he pressed me to the wall. But two could play that game. I instantly backed away, which made him smile and move into me like a hungry tiger. We must have looked like two boxers (in a game of seduction!) but wow, the swimming in the pool that night still stands out as one of the highlights of the experience in Panama.

Rrrr!

Rrrr!

Wet and dripping all over the marble floor, we walked down to my apartment. I shared the place with four other people so we tiptoed into my room, where he continued his game of seduction made easier by the fact that we were now on my bed. He definitely knew what he was doing, but I applaud myself on the fact that I did not have sex with him. My reasoning was simple: he lived a block away from me. If I succumbed immediately, I would never see this guy again. And I was actually so attracted to him, I knew he had the power to hurt me deeply. Power – the tool of the person who cares least.

We slept the whole night intertwined. This intimacy gave me a false feeling of connection to him. But in reality, I didn’t even know him. Not only was he a box of secrets, but I couldn’t even understand his version of Spanish! Sorry – Thpanish!  I was sure he was playing around. He was three years younger than me, working around the globe, not even thinking of settling down. And why would he? In Panama, as in many countries, Hugo could use his sensual Spanish to the full degree. Latin girls seemed to be dropping panties at the word foreigner and Spaniards took full advantage of that.

Hola chico!

Hola chico!

Me, on the other hand… Well, I wanted to find something meaningful and I knew that Hugo would not be it. Still, when he asked me if I wanted to go to the pool that morning, I took that to mean he was interested. Right after, he seemed to have changed his mind. The phone rang and soon after talking with whoever it was, he sprung out of bed and began to get dressed. “Call me” was the last thing he said before leaving.

Hard Rock Hotel

Hard Rock Hotel

At first I was in a great mood. Who cared about Hugo? It was convenient he lived close by and I could see him whenever I wanted. I would wait for him to call but I would not contact him first. I spent the rest of the day at the pool at Hard Rock Hotel we used to sneak into with the girls. We discussed each other’s guys as if we were on the episode of “Sex and the City”.

So needless to say I was in high spirits. I was young, in a new country and having wonderful adventures.

But a week later he didn’t call me. And another week after that. And I began to get obsessed. I couldn’t understand why a guy who practically lived near me, who almost had sex with me, who asked for my number, could not now ask me out or at least write something? Didn’t he want to eventually “seduce me”?

At the end, I couldn’t wait any longer and wrote him a message. The worst? He didn’t respond. I waited one day, two days… Maybe he didn’t get my message? We over-analyzed this situation on Nadia’s balcony countless times. But at the bottom of our hearts, I knew: if you are asking your girlfriend why he did this or that, he is unfortunately not just that into you. The truth hurt.

“Stop thinking about this guy.” Nadia told me countless times. “I don’t even know what is so special about him. I remember him as a bit of an asshole.”6a00e54ef2e21b883300e5503564568834-800wi

If only I could stop.

He finally replied two days later, saying he just received the message and that he would love to see me. I was so excited, I jumped up and down on the balcony. The next day I texted him the date and the time, but guess what? No answer again. To take my mind of off this nonsense, I went out with a group of friends only to receive two calls from him that night at 11 am. If this wasn’t a classic booty call, I don’ t know what is.

So ended any attempts on his part and I would have never seen him again, if it wasn’t for Nadia who kept on repeating over and over how she missed the mariscos he prepared for us and was wondering where he bought them. Ok, now I will admit. It wasn’t Nadia’s doing. It was mine. I needed any reason to text him again and now I had it.

Hugo texted back that he was really happy to hear from me and invited us over for dinner at his house. Apparently a new Spanish friend was visiting and needed entertaining. Nadia told me she would not have sex with the Spaniard. “I am not some entertaining committee here!” she told me. Good, because I wasn’t planning on sex with Hugo. Again. So why the hell was I prancing over to his place? Again? Had I become the stray dog, begging for scraps?

And if this could get any worse, here it is. Hug was pushing me to bring another girlfriend with me. Apparently he also had a Spaniard roommate and they were all thinking of playing couples Twister. I will repeat. Couples Twister. Is that the new lingo for an orgy? This Hugo seemed to have an array of male friends coming from Spain. Nadia and I joked about the huge line forming all over Madrid of the hot guys waiting to be sent over to Panama.

I wonder how this game ends

I wonder how this game ends

And if you were not yet convinced how low I could go, I will tell you: I actually saw Hugo with a Latin girl a couple of weeks prior to this. I swore to myself that I did the right thing in not sleeping with a man who is clearly sleeping all over Panama and now I was eagerly hopping to his house at the slightest beckoning.

The Spaniards were all there when Nadia and I came in the door. Hugo’s friend Javi was actually quite attractive and he flirted with me, until he realized that his friend was ‘with me’ (for that evening). It would have been brilliant to start flirting with Javi and leave Hugo hanging, but I really couldn’t control myself around this guy. Hugo was cooking chorizo, as apparently he had no time to go to the supermarket and get seafood so the whole pretense of dinner was obvious. The guys wanted sex, they wanted it easy and we came to accommodate that need. On a Tuesday.

After he finished cooking, Hugo sat by me, leaning back on the sofa and I sat near him, trying to seductively nibble on my chorizo. If you don’t know chorizo is a Spanish word for sausage. So now you get the pun. He talked to me but I also felt like he was flirting with Nadia, maybe to make me jealous or possibly because he actually didn’t give a damn about me. At one point he caressed my leg, in a way that said “Ok, Ok. You are with me. Don’t you worry.”

“I understand you” Nadia told me afterwards. “He is beautiful. He is deep. He has crazy charisma and mystery. This was from the girl that thought nothing of him when she first met him.

Her and Javi left right after (with no sex this time), leaving the other roommate alone on his cellphone looking dejected since everyone coupled up. The poor guy must have really been looking forward to the game of Couples Twister.

Low and behold, Hugo offered to walk me home. We didn’t kiss up until the building and there, as he kissed me, I no longer felt the same excitement. I knew I was being used. I was letting myself be used, rather and that felt low. Again, he wanted to come up and again I let him. I knew that no matter what happened that night – we would never see each other again. I could have sex and get hurt or I could simply spend the night with this overdue obsession of mine. I went with my heart and what it wanted for that night and that was to be close to him.

He lay down on my bed and we began kissing. As he removed my clothing, I told him I was not going to have sex with him.

“Why not?” he asked in that arrogant way of his.

“Because.. I just don’t trust you!”

“You don’t trust me?”

“What do you expect me to say after you disappeared that time?”

“What would you like me to do?”

“What would I like? Normal things, like a date”

“A date, huh.” He started thinking. “Ok”

He kept on talking in that self-assured way of his and I, deciding to take full control told him to shut up and actually gave him a blow job. In a way, I wanted to feel full power over him, to let him know just how good it could be with me but not to succumb to his power. At the same time, was I really gaining control or was I like a teenage girl thinking she could win a guy through ‘good head’?

The first thing he said was: “You don’t trust me? What if I don’t trust you? You know what you are doing. And I don’t know how many guys you have done this with.”

The guy was a bullshitter through and through. I can tell you that.

But thankfully I never had sex with him. Although letting him sleep in my bed the second time around and doing everything else but the actual act was just as good. And not seeing him again would hurt just as much.

That night, as we slept intertwined; I remembered his scent, the feel of his curly hair, the weight of him. I wanted to save it for the future, because I knew that when he walked out the door in the morning, that would be it. I felt it in my bones. As the morning came, his alarm sounded. He had to get up at dawn for work. As he got dressed, he stood there, looking at me almost as if he felt bad he couldn’t promise me anything. Then he kissed me on the cheek and left. Right after the door closed, I began to cry. The smell of him on my pillow lingered for another week.

He did ask me on a date (rather an invite to hand out with his girl friend, and possibly ‘walk me home’ again). I declined but hoped he would ask me out for real. It never happened and that was the last I saw of Hugo.

Nadia told me that she ran into him in a club not so long ago. He asked how I was and she told him I left Panama. He pondered over it and asked her why I never said bye. He could have driven me to the bus terminal.

Why I never said bye. Good question.

It is a story that stops without a proper ending, but it is also one that contains important lessons. The person with control is the one who cares least. Confidence changes the perception of looks in mere minutes. Heart sometimes makes us do low, desperate things. And bad boys do not always come on motorcycles, but they will ride all over your self worth. So put yourself in control, instead of secretly enjoying the feeling of being pulled like a puppet on a string and for the love of God, wait before you invite him up.