Let’s Talk about Stereotypes! – Italian, French, German

Every time I am interested in a guy from a different country, I make sure to read some of the ‘truths’ of dating this specific culture. I type in something like ‘dating a Spanish guy’ and get a variety of articles about how the Spanish are romantic, passionate and should call you often. I must admit, it’s very entertaining, and there is definitely some sense to them.  I live for stereotypes, as I’ve been told countless times… but how true are they? Or is it just easier to make an assumption?

After all, how many ‘do you drink vodka and do gymnastics’ do I get just because I’m a Russian. The best is ‘But you are not BLONDE!?’

So let me break down what I believe are facts and myths of popular stereotypes.

The Italians

Stereotype 1: Italians are whores.

Fact: Obviously there are great guys that are looking for a serious relationship, but to be frank with you, many of them are just not that good looking or confident.  The majority of the good looking guys will never be faithful to you. Even when they’re fifty. Even when they can’t get it up any more. The important part of their southern culture is passion, which is a great thing. The bad part about it is this passion will need to be fueled up every so often, preferably by different women. If you notice a man holding his girlfriend’s hand and eyeing you, he is doing that mostly to feed his own ego and to feel he still ‘has it’ in him. And we wonder why Italian girls are so high maintenance! What would you do if your boyfriend couldn’t be faithful to you for one minute? In the words of Ariana who scored a beautiful ‘Dolce and Gabbana’ lookalike Alessandro “Once a bitch was looking at him. I say ‘Ey,you. Who you looking at, Puta?’ I have to be like that or someone else get him, you know?”

Stereotype 2: Italian men are in love with themselves

Fact: If you’ve ever been to an Italian beach and seen a man spray-tanning himself and orlebarbrownthen staring at his chest with a mix of awe and love, you will get what I’m talking about. What about the crazy bright colors that the men so enjoy? Pink polos? Green capris? A variety of scarves?Tiny white shorts? Styled hair (that literally waves in the breeze) and plucked eyebrows? In North America, all of the above mean only one thing: you are gay, my friend. (But just for the record, I love it)

Stereotype 3: Italian men are beautiful at seduction

Fact: One thing that I find Italians are wonderful at is getting you into bed effortlessly. How do they manage it? Well, for one, they understand that we girls are starved for attention, passion and spontaneity… especially if residing in countries where men are too scared to make a move and even if they do, it is more robotic than sexy .  On the contrary, Italian men ooze sex appeal, they know how to make you feel like you are the center of the universe, how to create romance and how to convince you that if you don’t have sex with them it will be your loss, not theirs. After all, you will miss out on the night you will never forget. Probably a week of tears as well, especially if you were convinced he really liked you.

simonThe French

Stereotype 1: The French are the best dressers

Myth/Fact: This one really depends. I have dated two French guys who had very little sense of style, but Parisians are a whole different matter. I recently went out with a Parisian who was dressed to the t: stylish jacket, collared shirt, impeccably smelling. As in any culture, it depends on the person, but when they have it, they really have it. Not only that, most French guys will appreciate a woman to be well put together. By that, I don’t mean short dresses that show off your crotch. They appreciate a woman who has an elegant style, good hygiene and classy perfume. Bonus to you if the perfume is French as well!

Stereotype 2: French look down their noses at everyone

Myth/Fact: I was sitting at my friend’s house when his Parisian roomate I just met, decided to share his opinion on people from Montreal. It went along the lines of “Zos people sink zey are French, but zey are NOT! Zey speek sheet language! It is not French! It is like saying Americaines are from England. It is simplee not true!” And this went on for a good half an hour. But again, Parisians are special. We all know that.

Stereotype 3: French men are worldly and well-rounded

Paris-wedding-France-romance-wedding-dress-arinab-photography-vintage-inspired-wedding-wedding-in-paris-3Fact: So so so true! One guy I was seeing could start the conversation with politics and end with history. He had an  opinion about everything and always thought hard about any question I asked him, then would come up with a well-detailed and thought out response. But beware ladies.. while it is all very charming and deep at first, it will soon turn into over analyzing and annoying. Such as: Isn’t this skirt a bit too short? Why are you wearing a bikini in your Facebook profile? You seem bored.. You do not like spending your Sunday watching a French theater about restorative justice? (All of the above from a real experience.. within the same day) So while at first this philosophizing is wonderful and is such a great contrast from North American guys, many of whom will quote “the Anchorman” as their source of information… this nagging, obsessing, and overly critical approach to life and to you will soon have you running up the walls or rushing at him with a knife.

 French are great lovers

Double Fact: YES!!!!!!!!!!! Not that I’ve been with the whole of the French population. But two of the best lovers I have ever been with were French so that has to say something. They put so much emphasis on your satisfaction and they will do anything to live up to their reputation. And yes, they are very sexual. Being naked is natural to them. Sex is natural and there is nothing that’s off limits. In the opinion of my past boyfriend – making love or faire l’amour is passion, craziness, wildness, softness, dominating.. while having sex is just ‘useless’. Also, having sex on the first or second date doesn’t label you a ‘slut’ or put a dead end to a relationship like we tend to believe in North America (and in fact, most of the world)

The Germans

Stereotype 1: They are pragmatic

Fact: Instead of providing you with my opinion, I will tell you a true story told to me by my German girlfriend. “On my first date, I was with my then boyfriend cutting up potatoes for the soup. Don’t even ask me why I was cutting up potatoes on the first date. Anyways, I was cutting them perpendicularly, when he stopped me and suggested I cut them the other way. After all that would save time and make them boil quicker, as a result, saving energy. So there you go, Mia, those are Germans for you in a nut-shell. First date: potatoes and saving energy.”

Stereotype 2: They are horrible in bed

Myth: Ok, not a lot of experience. But they are apparently rated number 1 worst in bed because they are ‘too smelly’. From what I’ve seen (or rather smelled), no, they are not. Not bad either. Probably a bit robotic and aggressive. Also they make some strange/interesting sounds…

Stereotype 3: They lack a sense of humor

Myth: No, they’re very funny. Just in a very dry, sarcastic and dark kind of way.  So when they make a joke, sometimes it’s not clear if it actually IS one. It’s like “ha..ha… Is he joking or should I be scared?” But, really, I love their sense of humor because it is so unexpected and because it is that dry. But that’s just me.

In conclusion, I definitely believe in stereotypes. I enjoy them. I laugh about them. I write about them, but I do think that while stereotypes are there for a reason they cannot ever be applied to the whole country. Also, this is a new generation of people which has been raised with internet, Facebook and Hollywood movies, so the whole world has become a bit Americanized.

coloStill, many men are aware of their cultural stereotypes and try to use it them to their full potential. After all, how many girls go to Paris just to be swept off their feet? And we are still asking why European men love tourists. Because they CAN easily sweep them off their feet using the cliched phrases (amour, bella.. lieben?), postcard locations (Eiffel tower, Colosseum.. the Berlin Wall?) and their ‘sexy’ accent (German? ya?) to finalize the deal.

PS. All these observations are generalizations. I am aware that there are faithful Italians, stupid French people and passionate Germans.. so do not take this too literally.

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The One Minute Dating Survey!

Are Japanese men really that timid? Is it true that French know how to romanticize a woman or are Scandinavian men really so uptight? Do Persian men spend all their money on you while the Germans are very economical? What do you think of these stereotypes and what has your personal experience been with each culture?

Open up the following survey. It only takes a second to answer each question!

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The Sexy Bartender (2009) – The South African

I was twenty-four and traveling across Europe with a Contiki tour group. In a month we were supposed to cover around eight countries: from England, to Spain, to Switzerland, to the Netherlands.

I instantly bonded with the girls on the trip and made two friends: Demi and Diana who were both from Australia. Demi was a friendly blonde girl who clearly went to Europe to let all her inner devils out as she was constantly drunk to the point of stupidity or unconsciousness.  Diana was a slightly insecure brunette, who always seemed to crave approval. Too white and too curvy, she always compared herself with me, who was ‘too dam’ tanned and skinnay!’

Oh God...

Oh God…

At certain times, I got along with her perfectly; other times she made me feel like I was on the episode of the Hills with all the ridiculous drama and gossiping. Her insecurity became especially evident when it came to ‘who liked whom’ and she later came up with a rule that whenever one of us ‘claimed a guy’, mostly her, no one else could steal him away. The hilarity of it was that Demi went along with it happily, until one night she ended up having sex with a boy Diana already ‘claimed’. After this night, I stopped participating in their girly nonsense and became friends with a couple of hilarious guys from the group.

our Chateau

Besides the initial connection with the girls, I felt zero attraction to all the guys on the tour. I was quite disappointed when at the first group meeting in London I have realized that there was absolutely no potential in the group. The guys were okay, but they were not someone I would ever go for. Most were loud and obnoxious Australians who drank constantly. None were my type.

Our second stop was Bordeaux – a beautiful wine region in France. The bus swerved along the green hills until we stopped in front of a gigantic imperial Chateaux. This is where we were supposed to sleep for the two next days. That is until sleeping turned into partying and water in the sinks turned into puke.

We unpacked and quickly changed into our bikinis. I wore my bright orange one, hoping to show off to the boys from the other group. They definitely had more selection than we did. In comparison to all the Aussie girls I was the darkest with my deep tan and dark hair, so tanned in fact that I literally always get mistaken for Latin.

While in the water, I suddenly spotted a group of guys in red shirts standing by the railing some distance away. One, a very cute blond one was looking my way. A few minutes later, they disappeared just as if they never stood there.

Gollum-lord-of-the-rings

Precious!

After the pool there was the wine tasting. Constantly our schedules were filled up by one event after another, which was a lot of fun unless you were sick or tired. Later on in the trip I was practically forced to walk around Rome feeling like I was going to pass out. And believe me, when you are on the verge of collapsing, no amount of statues or Italian men can make you feel better. On top of it all, I now have lost my voice and couldn’t speak. When I did speak I sounded like the Gollum from the Lord of the Rings.

The bed with no railings!

I came in late for the wine tasting. An average looking plump guy was talking about wine, and then another guy took his place. That was the cute blond from the pool. Broad shouldered and athletic, with short hair and light eyes, he was funny and well spoken. And by the look of the drooling girls in the crowd, I wasn’t the only one who thought so.

Marla, the red-headed girl from my group looked smitten by him and as soon as he finished the speech, walked up and flirted mercilessly.

“This is disguising” I whispered to Demi and Diana. “Could she be more obvious?”

“Actually” I continued, eyeing Marla as she walked away. “There was one question I wanted to ask…”

groupie

Ugh

Breaking my very serious resolution to not approach this guy, simply because I hate feeding someone’s ego and I being yet another groupie, I walked up the table and directed my attention to the plump guy.

“I have no voice” I whispered “is there anything you can give me to cure it?”

The blond cutie laughed. “How about O de V? A shot of that would probably make you feel better. Even if you don’t get your voice back”

“Whatever helps!” I beamed. Demi and Diana were beaming too, a little too much. They were definitely making me feel like I was part of some boy band fan club. At least they had enough decency not to lift up the shirts so he could sign their breasts.

The blond boy poured all of us a shot from a bottle that had a worm swimming in it and we toasted. He introduced himself as Myles and the plump boy as Sam. Myles worked as a bartender at the Chateaux for a few months, but was originally from South Africa. He had the most beautiful accent I have ever heard. We talked a little bit and I could sense that Myles was interested in me. He paid some attention to the girls, but most of his conversation was aimed at me who still tried to be as flirty as I could be while sounding like a scary creature.

“There’s a party tonight” he said “I hope to see you all there.”

“Sure” giggled Diana yet again “We will see you there!” she twisted her shoulders in order to appear sexier. It made me nauseous.

Our walk back to the Chateaux was filled with the most girly talk you can imagine consisting of he’s so hot and who does he like, finishing with whoever he likes, that’s who gets him. I agreed with the plan, because I was pretty certain he liked me.

The basement bar was filled with people from our group and many from the other bus. I spotted Myles at the bar and he smiled to me charmingly. I took a deep breath. He was really gorgeous in that beach boy kind of way.

I positioned myself in his eye view and danced, turning back every so often to check if he was still looking at me. I noticed Marla on the other side of the room also throwing glances his way. I was not exactly jealous of her, but I felt that if I did not do anything soon, she would. So I inhaled deeply and walked up to him.

He seemed genuinely interested in talking to me and actually asked me personal questions about my job and my life. The conversation was going very smoothly, until Demi, who was standing to the side of me laughing with Sam and drinking, simply collapsed to the floor. She did not look sick nor did she prepare herself for the fall. She literally collapsed like a sack of potatoes, killing my conversation immediately.

I was scared for her but also angry at her for ruining my night. I rushed to her side immediately, screaming “Demi!” but she wouldn’t even budge. Myles offered to carry her to our room and Sam helped him, while Diana and I walked alongside them. Once in the room, Demi gained consciousness, but at this point I couldn’t exactly leave her alone, so I nursed her back to health. Myles and Sam left back to the bar.

After Demi stopped throwing up and started laughing like her usual self, I decided to head back. I tried to talk to Myles, but he was distracted, so I went back to dance. Soon, he came to join us. Slightly drunk, he danced close to me, but for some reason I felt uncomfortable getting really close, even though I was extremely attracted to him. Marla, however, did not hesitate a bit. She was suddenly all over him. Wanting him to realize that I was classier and would not slobber all over his body, I held back. Torn between the two of us, Myles looked like a lost child. The top part of his body leaned my way, but the bottom wanted an easy lay.

The bottom half clearly won as soon he disappeared through the door. Marla followed him. The rest of the evening I sat on the windowsill and cried with Cassie, an older girl from my tour.
“Why are guys like this?” I asked. “Do I have to be a slut to get someone?”

“No, you don’t.” Answered Cassie. “You only have to be a slut to get someone for one night and that’s what Marla will get.”

Obviously Myles wasn’t my soul mate and clearly we were not meant to be together, but it hurt to be rejected like this. My pride held me from chasing after him and I would not go against myself in order to attain someone. In order to have meaningless sex with someone I barely knew? Still the picture of them two in bed was depressing. Here I was, trying to be coy and playful and all she had to do was follow him out the door. How is that for subtle?

I went to sleep in tears. Thankfully I didn’t fall off my bed with no railings! Otherwise I would have been crying in the vineyards.

The next morning I have decided to try another strategy. After all, we still had one more day. At this point it was my self esteem that needed a lift. However, I didn’t see him until the early evening. During the morning we had to go for a picnic to the vineyards. Marla was there with her little clique and I still remember how much I loathed her. Every laugh I saw, every smile just made me imagine her in bed with Myles. And I was extremely jealous.

The picnic was torture. It was extremely beautiful: rolling green hills and a variety of fruits along the way, but all I wanted to do was get back to the Chateaux so I could see him again. I knew I shouldn’t even talk to him again after what happened, but I could not let it go.

I saw him later on when we went down for dinner. He was behind the bar, but paid very little attention to me. I was so conscious of him being there that I could not concentrate on anything. I absentmindedly listened to people talk and smiled at appropriate moments. Why wasn’t he paying attention to me?

I was so miserable and felt so insecure that I have even changed my clothes and put some makeup on so he would notice me. However, that changed nothing. So I sat there furiously until I thought enough is enough and went up to my room.

I sat on the bed feeling dejected when Demi walked in the room.

“What’s wrong?” She asked me.

I ended up telling her how disguising I felt about the whole situation. I was still obsessed with a guy who was ignoring me and has already slept with another girl.

Demi sat on the bed. “Mia” she said in a conversation I never forgot to this day. “You are the most beautiful girl on this tour. Not only are you pretty on the outside, but you have an incredible personality that goes along with it. So start believing in yourself.”

The fact that Demi could comfort me without a touch of jealousy or girly cattiness literally wowed me. In that short speech she had lifted my spirits so high I felt like I was on top of the world. It is incredible what a surge of confidence can do to your appearance and how people start looking at you.

I changed into my heels and a sparkling yellow top and walked out the door – my head Wonder-Woman_Animatedhigh. Every step I made was filled with  confidence. I am pretty! I do have a great personality! And I am confident! I thought as I walked down the hall. Who is he or Marla for that matter to make me feel insecure?

Suddenly, I felt as if everyone became so utterly insignificant and here I was – radiating with confidence.

Diana caught up with me in the hall and stared at me with even more insecurity and some confusion as she followed me down the stairs. Immediately, I walked up the bar stand.

“How are you?” I asked Myles playfully. His face literally lit up. I could control him like a puppet, I suddenly realized.

The power that confidence can give us is truly incredible as he no longer treated me as invisible. In fact, I was more than visible as he literally could not take his eyes off of me and my new found confidence.

“If you turn on some Latin music” I offered “ I can teach you how to dance salsa.”

“Deal” he smiled and we shook hands on it.

Minutes later he ran up to me saying he could not find any Latin music, but we could still dance to something else.

“Let’s get some air instead” I offered.

I'M-SEXY-AND-I-KNOW-IT-песочница-114840He followed me up the stairs commenting all the while about my fit legs and how often I must go to the gym. We sat on the hill outside the Chateau right underneath my window and talked. In reality, maybe because he was drunk or tired, or possibly because he really was not my ‘type’ we had not very much to talk about. Our conversation was quite hollow and very dull. In fact, I felt as if I was slowly being slaughtered.

Suddenly we heard voices from the window above us: “Just do it!” Turned out afterwards, it was the girls from my room who, much like me, could no longer handle the agony of this painful conversation.

“Well, I should go” he suddenly said, but did not move.

“Let’s go then” I said, pissed off at him and stupid me for trying to ‘entice him’. I think I even tried my Russian accent on him, which is usually my last plan. And which generally works quite well. I began picking up my shoes.

“I should tell you something” he then said. “I am very attracted to you, but I already hooked up with one of the girls on your bus. And to be honest, I didn’t really like her.. She was just there and I went for it.”

His honesty took me back a little. Ok, so at least he had the decency to let me know.

“I know” I told him. For some reason I exclaimed that Marla wasn’t even attractive and muttered about how sad it was to chase after a guy like that. Even though, technically, that’s exactly what I was doing.

He stared at me for some time, then realizing I was not angry and was still interested, leaned in to kiss me. We kissed for some time, though I felt cheap, as if I was still the second best. Here I was, putting down the girl for sleeping with a guy, yet still taking her hand-me-downs.

After we kissed, he had to go back to work and I went back to answer multiple questions from girls. When I came up to the bar, Marla was there, but he was smiling to me. It felt amazing. However, it clearly infuriated her and she tried to get his attention any way she could: she flirted and danced with another guy in front of his face, but he did not seem to care.

Later, Demi and I as well as a few other guys from our group, sat on the couches outside of the Chateau. Myles came out of the door of the building and awkwardly smoked as he stared my way until I picked up my shoes and walked towards him, through the hooting of “he’s dreamy!” that a few guys started.

e372d92cMarla eyed us as we walked into the doorway and I definitely felt a lot of pleasure from her watchful gaze. He led me into the Chateau where he pressed me against the wall and kissed me passionately. He would tease me by kissing me deeply then pulling back and running his hand over my neck and stomach. The bastard knew what he was doing as every time he pulled away from me, I wanted him even more. I swear it was incredible.

However, I would never be someone’s second best.

“I will not have sex with you” I smiled to him. He seemed a little bit thrown off, but continued kissing me as if I haven’t said anything. He told me he would close the bar and find me.

He may have come out looking for me, or I may have created that illusion to console myself, because when he did come out again, Marla joined him. I was incredulous. “Does he expect me to go there with both of them?” I asked Demi. I looked, but I couldn’t move. They sat side by side talking and suddenly disappeared in the doorway.

I guess his lower half won again.

I was disgusted with both of them: with her because she knew he was with me and yet had no pride to say no to him, and him because he had nothing besides his penis to think for him. I sat on the bathroom floor crying, then finally sobered up. Who was he to cry over? I created an illusion out of a guy, simply because he was ‘my type’. A guy who constantly fooled around with eager girls passing by Bordeaux, hoping to have their little fling in the vineyards. Marla and I were just one of many.

I never told Marla about my side of the story after we became closer friends. Apparently the night with Myles also meant a lot to her as it was the first time she ever had a one night stand and I didn’t want to ruin on her parade. It was kind of ironic how much I hated her when in reality it was him who made the choice.

1de113708cdf75ebeec48b601e6b4925-d2y5bshI realize that this is a pretty insignificant story. However, for one reason or another, I still remember this player boy from time to time,especially the thrill I felt while being kissed against the wall. And isn’t it what we all want – some passion? Even if it is followed by some tears in the bathroom!

A player or a romantic? – Part 1: Rome (2011)

I fell for this guy because I thought he was bad. A player. Instead, what I found out is that looks can truly be deceiving.

He was beautiful. I noticed him our first night in the restaurant while my American friend Pamela and I were eating dinner. I was travelling through Europe for two months and Italy was our third country. After Rome, we would take an overnight ferry that would bring us to Croatia.

Though the main reason for my trip was of course my love for travelling and adventure, I also wanted to take this time to figure out if I really wanted to stay with Dominick. Yes, the guy I already cheated on at the beginning of our relationship (see Non Parle Americano). It has been eight months since we’ve been together and even though he looked perfect on paper, not to mention, loved by my whole family, I didn’t love him. The first time he told me he loved me, I remember I said something along the lines of ‘wow. How incredible’ and the next time I randomly blurted out me too. Not ‘I love you too’. No, me too. I said it out of nowhere. I just couldn’t bring myself to say the word love to him, because these words were a blatant lie.

At the bottom of my heart, leaving for Europe signified the end of us. I selfishly made him wait for me as I went to explore what I really wanted. And I knew that what I wanted was someone else.

However, all I really met were a lot of players, shallow guys and men that were really not worth it. Should I stay with Dominick by default? Just because I couldn’t find any better?

We arrived at the campsite late at night. Looking around the beautiful grounds I felt uplifted: there was a giant pool, beautiful flowers, palm trees and an open air restaurant with live music. It was an incredibly romantic place, however, it seemed that the only people vacationing there were families. Now, eating dinner, I turned my head to the right only to see the most beautiful profile of a guy. He was tanned, with gorgeous almond shaped chocolate eyes and full sensual lips. He was sitting at the table with two dark guys and a blonde girl, serious and oblivious to my stares.

The most remembered meal from the trip. The beef carpaccio was amazing

The most remembered meal from the trip. The beef carpaccio was amazing

He disappeared after dinner and I figured I wouldn’t see him again. Pamela, who was very outgoing and a little bit intimidating for some guys because she was quite masculine and dominating, somehow managed to meet a cute Colombian called Jose. While Jose and her were hitting it off, I sat near his unibrowed friend Antony and sulked.

“Can we maybe look for something in the city tomorrow?” I asked selfishly. She was in seventh heaven after meeting Jose, but I only cared about myself. I knew I would have to spend my evenings watching their romance, while nothing would happen for me unless I wanted to give it a go with his unibrow friend.

The next day we spent exploring the extremely hot and tiring city of Rome, which is made especially annoying in August as it is swamped by tourists. I swear you cannot even see the Trevi Fountain behind all the Asians with their huge, expensive cameras. As soon as we got back we headed to the pool to wash off the sticky sweat from the city. I was sitting on the lounge chair when I saw him enter. He looked just as beautiful as I remembered: tall, bronze, his face now unshaven. I watched him swim laps in the pool all the while sighing like a fifteen year old.

Our pool

“He’s so my type! What do I do?”

Pame shrugged. “Just wait until the evening, when everyone starts drinking. It will be easier than in the daylight.”

She was right. I had to talk to him. I just didn’t know if I had enough guts to make the first move.

He got out of the water and sat on the chair, smoking with a vacant look in his liquid brown eyes. He didn’t even notice me as I stuck out my butt and strutted in front of him.

I saw him again in the evening. He was standing near the piano, listening to one of the musicians play and singing along in Portuguese. He looked like a Brazilian model: broad-shouldered, gorgeous and tanned in his white shirt and faded jeans. I breathed a sigh of nervousness. Oh my God. He is the man of my dreams. 

Colombian Jose and Unibrow Antony suggested getting some drinks at the Beer Garden where the Brazillian band was playing. I happily agreed. Can we sit on the benches here? Near him?

I stared at his broad back, until I must have shot holes through him with my deadly stare, because he turned around and gave me a glance. The glance, however, was completely neutral. That didn’t mean I was giving up. Any time I want to draw a guy’s attention, I always go to my Plan B: dancing. Practically forcing Jose and Pame on the dance floor, I danced nervously right in front of his eyes. When I got enough courage, I finally looked at his expression. Once again, he looked blank and serious. Seriously, what is up with this guy? I thought. Cursing everything under my breath and feeling completely invisible, I left the dance floor and went to go check the internet. Clearly, he’s seen his share of beautiful women. Why would he go for some girl in a yellow dress?

the Beer Garden

When I came back I noticed that the boy and one of his friends stayed alone and have now moved to a table far across from us. In the middle there was another table with a few people playing cards. I threw awkward gazes at him, until Jose looked  at me.

“You like the guy in the white?” He asked with a wide grin.

“No. Yes.” I mumbled.

“Then you should do something.” He offered.

“I am not doing anything. I don’t know if he’s interested. I mean, he is kind of looking at me. Oh my God.” I breathed, seeing him get up from his table. “Is he coming over?”

The beautiful boy and his friend took their beers and walked towards us. This is it, I thought. However, my heart literally dropped when he moved to the table in between. Namely, right near a blonde girl.

Yep, it wasn’t me he was checking out.

“So are you going to talk to him?” asked Jose.

“Just stop. Please. He’s not interested.” I muttered. He was starting to piss me off and in all honesty I just felt pathetic. I spent half my night staring at a guy who wasn’t interested in me after all. Could I be any more of a loser?

Suddenly, another thought came into my mind. I was on vacation. What did I have to lose? Sure, he looked like a player. Sure, he was beautiful. But how could I be positive about anything unless I talked to him? Otherwise, I would spend the rest of my night staring at Pamela sticking her tongue down Jose’s mouth and thinking What if.

“Give me some wine, please” I ordered Pamela. Taking the plastic cup with my shaking hands, I stood up. “I am going to talk to him.”

Thank you, wine in a paper cup

Thank you, wine in a paper cup

“Wow” grinned Pamela. “I am really proud of you. Do it.”

Nervous as hell, I walked up to their table. “Can I join the game?” I asked to no one in particular. His dark friend looked up.

“Yes, of course” He said in his bad English. I awkwardly seated myself on his right. The beautiful boy was in front of me, but I couldn’t bring myself to look at him. I did get a glance at the girl. She was not pretty. Not only that, she had a really hippy looking bearded man for a boyfriend. Wow, how deceiving it can be when you judge a situation from a distance. Namely, from someone’s back!

I continued talking to his friend(who turned out to be his cousin)for some time. Then I finally found the guts to turn my head and look at my boy. He smiled at me. I smiled back and talked very fast as I always do when I am nervous.

His name was Luiz and he was from Portugal, though as I assumed correctly, he was part Brazilian. And the strangest thing? Luiz was nice. He looked like a very successful and gorgeous player, but he wasn’t. Or at least he didn’t seem like one. His English wasn’t great, but at this point, what did I care? I was actually talking to him. And he wasn’t someone I thought he was. In a good way.

And he was twenty-three. I was officially becoming a cradle robber.

Behind him, Jose and Pamela held thumbs up. That is before, they stuck their tongues down each other’s mouths for about an hour and disappeared.

I spent some time talking to Luiz, until I figured I should try to get him away from the crowd. Subtly!

“ I should go back to bed.” I said. Luiz, not getting the hint, grew visibly disappointed.

“Would you like to walk me back?” I offered not so subtly.

He nodded happily. We started walking to the cabin, when he asked me if I wanted to take a walk around the park.

tumblr_m5y9k7oDPX1r3a6jho1_500The walking turned into sitting and sitting turned into lying as he spread out his sleeping bag on the ground. It was a freezing night, so he gave me his sweatshirt and kept on covering me up every second to make sure I was warm. We kissed and talked. Kissed and talked again. This went on for hours. He would sweep the hair from my eyes and run his hands over my face.

“I really like kissing you.” He told me. Was he just saying that to get me into bed? Looking at him and his sexy eyes, it was hard to imagine him as anything other than a player, but the gentle way he was with me proved otherwise. Granted, he did press me down and try to take it further. Even though I wanted him, I stopped it at kissing. Luiz seemed both innocent and impish at the same time. I didn’t know which side was true. But he was definitely one – a romantic.

He walked me back to the cabin, a sleeping bag on his shoulders and I kissed him goodnight, standing on my tiptoes.

“Goodnight Mia” he smiled softly. I ran into the cabin like a little girl.  I fell asleep exhilarated  No thought about Dominick even crossed my mind.

The next day was our final one in Rome and coincidentally, his final one  as well. Distracted, in the ruins of the Coliseum, all I could think about was seeing Luiz again. After all, this was it.

When we came back, I was extremely nervous.

“Don’t build yourself up” told me Pamela as we sat in the restaurant, waiting for our order. She has recounted her amazing sex with Jose, how it went on for the longest time and what a big dingaling he had. However, what threw her was that he never even asked her for her contact information. She didn’t understand it.

“I mean, he could meet another girl or maybe you won’t like him. Who knows?” she shrugged. “Just relax and see what happens.”

Thanks, I wanted to say, that is a really uplifting speech. However, I felt like I knew Luiz. He wouldn’t do this to me. He was a genuinely sweet guy.

When he entered the restaurant, my heart began palpitating again. He was just so incredibly gorgeous. I was unsure if he saw me, because he looked so serious. He didn’t smile or wave at me. I couldn’t take my eyes off of him as I ate the pasta. He was wearing a hoodie and jeans, his beautiful dark eyes concentrated on something.

Later on, when I was almost close to freaking out, we finally saw each other in the lobby. He smiled to me and kissed me on the cheek.

“Do you girls want to join us for drink?” He asked.

We sat with his cousins as Pamela told one story after another. To me, it felt like I was in English for Beginner’s Class. Pamela, who is a teacher like me, knew how to tell a story not only well but clearly. The Portuguese found everything hilarious and laughed in unison.

Pamela fell in love with Luiz. “If you don’t sleep with him, I swear I will” she told me in the bathroom. “He’s just adorable.”

“Ok, Pame.. Just so you don’t get him first!” I laughed.

Luiz held my hand under the table as everyone talked in their broken English and shared stories about America and Portugal. I felt like I was in high school. Soon, everyone left and so did Pame. She looked upset because Jose was gone and she would have to spend the night by herself. It didn’t help that I was with Luiz now.

Our first sex wasn’t incredible. To tell the truth, it wasn’t even good. He was nervous. We were both awkward. It was in an empty room in the cabin, but instead of regular beds, there were bunk beds.. so at one point I hit my head on the bottom of the other bed. And he came too early. As he lay near me I could feel his dissapointment.

“You hated that, yes?” he finally said, his voice like a little boy’s.

“I didn’t hate that!” I said, half lying. I didn’t hate it, because it was with him. I liked him. The sex? I wasn’t so certain.

“You are lying” he concluded and crossed his arms like a stubborn child. I found this ridiculously endearing and kissed him.

“You know” He added.  “I would like to take you out. We could listen to some piano or go to a restaurant. I wish we don’t go tomorrow.”

“I wish we didn’t go tomorrow as well” I sighed.

“I really like you, you know?” He turned to me. “I am not saying it because I had sex. It’s more for me. I do not want us to forget each, Mia”

“We won’t forget each other. I like you too” I said.

“Good. Because I really like spending, time with you. I never pay attention to girls, unless they have something special. When you started to talk I didn’t.. could not stop listening to you.”

“You mean when I babbled on and on?”

“When you what?” he turned to me, his big eyes confused.

“Nevermind. When I talked a lot, I mean”

“Yes, you talked a lot. But I liked” he smiled. “Can I ask you one question?”

I nodded.

“Can I spend night with you? It’s cold in tent and I like having you near.”

Not us, but how it felt

Not us, but how it felt

“Of course!” I exclaimed. The bed was narrow and I was stuck to the wall. We would have to sleep in an embrace the whole night, but I wanted to sleep close to him. He felt so dear to me in such a quick time. A boy who was beautiful and who looked like a player, but who had such a great and pure heart. I didn’t want to leave him. I breathed in his scent and felt his warm breath against me as I dozed off.

I dreamed of him that night. I would wake up and look at his perfect face and feel both happy and sad. Happy because he was just so damn beautiful and I had him near me. Sad because, well, I wouldn’t have him near me for much longer. He lay there, dark against the white of the pillow. I wanted to take a picture of him. Not to be creepy, or anything. I felt pretty proud of myself as well, I must say. Inwardly, I gave myself a round of applause.

The next morning was difficult and awkward. We kissed each other goodbye and he left. He came in again when I was talking to Pamela. I felt his scent even before seeing him.

“I wanted to say bye to both of you again” he awkwardly shuffled in the doorway.

I was awkward also, mostly because I looked ghastly without any makeup, my hair all disheveled and I didn’t want him to remember me like that. I kissed him goodbye and that was that.

Pame and I took a ferry to Croatia, where we stayed on the coast. It was an incredible place only made miserable by the fact that I missed him so much. I added him to Facebook, but he never wrote me an email. Instead I would skim through Dominick’s letters, annoyed that it was him and not Luiz who emailed me. There was an island we went to, called Hvar, full of beautiful tanned people. I kissed a Spanish guy, rather got licked by him, to better describe it. Apart from that, I once again missed my Luiz. He wasn’t just beautiful, he had a good heart. Most of these guys were arrogant, shallow assholes. And they weren’t anywhere as gorgeous as him.

Hvar Island

Finally, Luiz began writing to me and we established contact. I laughed and made annoying ‘aww’  noises as I read his hilarious emails. He was just so adorable! I was probably the most irritating person to be around made only tolerable by the fact that Pamela really liked Luiz.

When I was in Budapest, I was on the computer one day and started to talk to him. Our conversation centered on how much we wanted to see each other until I suggested he visit me at my last stop – Berlin. He invited me to Portugal first, however, as much as I wanted to I coudn’t risk being exposed and hurting Dominick.

Please, please come to Berlin! I really want to see you! I begged, thinking he was going to say no. He had to start work after all.

He got back to me that night. Yes, he would come.

But I love you (2012)

A hilarious story of being chased down by an Italian guy in the middle of the night as he professed his love for me. Ah, Italian men.  It is a must try speciality on your next trip to Italy, followed by an aperitivo and tartuffo gelato.

Having heard amazing things about Sorrento, located in the Amalfi Coast of Italy, from my friend who met a beautiful Italian and had sex with him on a beach (followed by no more romance, clearly) I was interested to see what this place would be like. It is swamped by men, narrated my friend, her eyes lit up. You have to go there!

Amalfi-Coast

beautiful Amalfi coast

She was right about one thing, it was filled with beautiful men. Bronzed, toned and practically smelling of scooters and sex, they were everywhere. I even made it a game for myself to see how many guys I could consider sleeping with. The list made it pretty far before I gave up counting and considered myself a slut.

That night though, I didn’t meet anyone and was tired of sitting in touristy bars, scoping out guys, so I followed the girls from my hostel home.

Suddenly, I heard someone speaking in Italian behind me. I turned around. There was this pretty blond boy with light blue eyes and sculpted lips, a helmet in his hands, following me.

Baciami!” He pointed at his cheek, clearly wanting me to kiss him.

Vaffanculo!”  I gestured, happy I got a chance to use one of my favorite and perfected Italian phrases. Learning Italian has finally paid off.small-vaffanculo

The boy seemed to get the hint somewhat and disappeared. Minutes later, however, he reappeared right behind me.

Catso!” I exclaimed with my swear number two, though a part of me was strangely flattered. He was quite beautiful. Tall, tanned, sporting a light pink polo shirt and jeans. I knew there was only one reason he must have followed me this far and it wasn’t because he wanted to get to know me.

“What is your name?” he asked, coming up.

“What is yours?” I asked.

“I am Gabrielle”

“Mia”

“I can walk with you, Mia?” It wasn’t really a question. Rather a matter of fact.

“You look like you are too young for me” I told him, looking him over. He looked to be about twenty-three.

“I am not too young” he said.

“Just how young are you?” I pressed, not really wanting to know anyways. It was clear he was too young.

“I am twenty-one” he said. “Actually, I joke. I am twenty-four. Does it matter?”

“Yes, I am twenty-seven. You are too young either way.” I said and continued walking.

He ran up to me and grabbed my hand. “Come with me.” The girls continued walking in front of us.

“I am not going anywhere with you.” I said, trying to break my hand free. At the same time, a little intrigued and curious as usual, I thought why not? I might have a chance to write about him later in my blog.

Suddenly, he took my face and turned it to his. He kissed me so quickly, I didn’t even have a chance to react. But once he did kiss me, I pushed him away. “What are you doing?”

“ I like you” He said. “You are very beautiful.”

“You do not even know me!” I exclaimed with a half laugh. “What is my name?”

“Uh.. Maria?”

“There you go. You don’t even know my name. How can you ‘like me’?”

“Mia. Your name Mia. I remember names.” He smiled impishly.

I sighed. “Ok, nice to meet you. Now I’m going to go.”

“Where you go? I go with you.”

“You are not going to my hotel. My friends are waiting for me.” I pointed at the bored Australian girls who were standing a few meters away, talking and looking back every so often.

“It’s ok” he said. “Come!” he led me to a side street. I tried fighting him off, but it was quite useless. Probably because I didn’t really fight him off, rather pretended to.

Un baccio per favore!

Un baccio per favore!

There, in that side street, he took my face in his hands and began kissing me again, eagerly.

“Why you are not relaxed?” he asked. “Try to relax when I kiss you.”

“I am not relaxed, because I don’t want to kiss you!” I said. This was incredible – now I wasn’t relaxed when kissing him. The guy that literally forced himself on me.

“I help you find your hotel” He said.

“No”

“Si, we go together.” He stated as if I had no other choice. “I know everything in Sorrento.”

“You are not helping me find my hotel. I don’t even know you.”

“You do. I am Gabrielle. You are Mia”

I sighed loudly, exasperated. “My friends are waiting for me!”

“Is ok. They know where the hotel is, yes?”

Giving up and also finding this quite hilarious, I followed his lead. We walked around the dark streets speaking a mixture of bad English on his part and bad Italian on my part. Every so often, he would stop and say “Uf, I need a break.” Then he would press me to him and begin kissing me. At first I kept on pushing him away, but as the kissing continued, I finally gave in and began to enjoy myself a bit. He was a kid but a very beautiful and Italian kid and what better way to enjoy Italy then through a genuine Italian experience?

Just like that

Just like that

Finally, through all the walking and getting lost, my relationship with Gabrielle escalated so much and so rapidly that he looked into my eyes after kissing me and said the three words every girl wants to hear.

Ti amo

I burst out laughing. “You do not love me! What is it with you Italian men?”

“But I do. I love you.”

“You don’t know me!I just met you twenty minutes ago. You don’t even know what I do!”

“What do you do, Mia?”

“I am a teacher. And you?”

“I am studying to be chiropractor.” He answered. Having gotten that out of the way he pulled me into him again. “Kiss me”

There it was. Our first real relationship talk. Now we knew each other inside and out.

The next time we got lost, I figured he must be doing this on purpose.

“You better help me find the hotel.”

“Why are you in hurry?” He asked.

“I am tired, that’s why.”

“Why you are tired. Is early.”

“It is 4 am.”

“Early! Kiss me!” he pressed his eager lips into mine.

I sighed. There was no way out of this. He pressed me towards the fence and kissed me. He also pressed his erection towards my pelvis and I figured this time he wanted more than kissing. I guessed I was right when I heard unzipping.

This is when I squirmed out of his passionate embrace and practically ran down the hill. He ran after me.

“Mia, I am sorry.  Mia, wait!”

“I am not having sex with you.”

“No sex, just kissing. I love you.”

“Stop saying you love me already!” I exclaimed. He was being ridiculous. “All you Italian men are the same.”

“I am good boy. What are you saying?” He smiled impishly.

We walked around for a few more  minutes, until finally I located the road my hotel was on and skipped towards it happily with him following behind grouchily.

Entrance to the hotel

Knowing this was it, the end of our quick romance, he pressed me towards yet another fence and once again, I felt his hardness on me.

“Gabrielle” I said, once I finally had a chance to breathe. “ I am not having sex with you.”

“But you are twenty-seven. You are virgin?” he cocked his head to the side, genuinely confused.

“That’s not your business. But either way, I don’t go to Italy to have sex with all Italian boys” I exclaimed.

“But I love you.” He continued.

Exasperated I broke out of his embrace and walked towards the hotel. “Goodnight Gabrielle!”

Standing there, dejected he looked towards me as I walked through the door. “Ciao

And the strange thing is, he must have loved me so much, his heart probably broke from sadness, because I never saw him again.2

Men in Rome (2012)

I’m going to Italy in two weeks and have decided to try CouchSurfing in Rome. For those of you who don’t know what CS is: basically you stay for free at someone’s house and they even take the time to show you around. The idea seems very strange to some people, but no, you do not have to host that person afterwards, and yes, it is safe. However, if a girl decides to stay over at a guy’s place, well, she should know what she might possibly be getting into. Even though, unless she wants to, technically sex is out of the question.

I’ve only done CS once, where I stayed with a guy but there is no way I would stay at a guy’s place in Rome. Really, that’s just asking for it! The thing is that while Italian men eagerly participate in CouchSurfing community, I think they have a pretty different notion of what it is supposed to be. “Oh, I heard. Is free dating website? Yes? But is better, because she is foreigner (meaning easy!), she stay at your house and then you never see her. I like very much. I sign up.”  Though he might try to make it romantic and show you Piazza Navona or the Coliseum before he gets down to ‘seducing you’.

Anyways, I posted my request to the only girl I could find in the whole city. She never replied. Instead, what I received were countless (over seventy! I’m not kidding) messages from men aged 18-50 providing me with multiple services and tours, all of which, I assume revolve around the bedroom/bathroom area.

itals1

Here are my chosen favorites:

Ciao Mia,

I saw your profile in CS and i’ve been fascinated by you, your body and your head.

If you are not able to find out something good for sleeping, don’t be shy and call me. If otherwise you succeed in finding out a good place to stay, call me to have a drink. I can show you some part of Rome out-of-commercial.

CiaO! Antonio

I didn’t know I had a fascinating head!

Ciao Mia, I Read your couch request, and you’re an interesting girl! as long as you like partying, talking and share experiences you’re more than welcome 🙂 about me, I have a clothes shop in the center of rome, so i know my city quite well so, i think I have a couch for you, i just have to check if my family is going to be in Rome, if not my house is your house!
Ciao, Marco
Ok, the clothing shop was a little difficult to pass up I must admit.
Hello I would like to  host you in my little house, after the fishing and cooking, the theater and ‘my favorite hobby ..
Which is…? Seriously, what is it?
Ciao Mia!
Welcome to ROME….welcome to eternal city…ROMA….!!!In any case if you need you need advice or a guide for visit the City (magic place), or to eat an ice cream special, or make a good aperitif-dinner, or eat the original Neapolitan pizza, or a night out for dancing(salsa, bachata, tango argentino, samba, lindy hop, disco music) or a drink, i’m available to accompany you and show you the city (Special places no tourist)….or anything else you should need not hesitate to call me …!! 🙂 Christiano
Only Italians can suggest such a grand tour. An American would probably go with   ‘and then we’ll hang out or grab some beer’
One Italian guy’s interest was actually sex. But at least he’s honest about it.
The point is, Italian men really know how to seduce a woman with wine, sightseeing, CiaoBella_PinotGrigioscooters and clothing.. too bad this only lasts until the first night!

Three Days und Three Years (2007)

My first real romance and how it has affected me as a young(ish) girl. We knew each other for three days and I thought about him for three years. It’s true that the first time hurts… like hell!

Being a late bloomer, I was still a virgin at twenty-two. I could not figure out why,  but I was never physically drawn to any guys that I’ve shortly dated up to this point. While I was dying of curiosity and of course dying to have sex with someone, I could not for the life of me do it with someone I was not attracted to. Unfortunately, all of the boys I have dated  did not fulfill the ideal of the strong man that I so wanted. Even kissing them stirred no sense of longing in me.

I have not had a boyfriend for an eternity. Up to this point kissing was just okay and sex was an illusion I felt would never become real. I have started to consider myself an ‘old virgin’ and began to think there might be something wrong with me. Maybe I was abnormal? All my friends have already had sex and here I was, not even really wanting to.

That December, I took a trip to the Dominican Republic with my mother, thinking that I needed to get away from the cold Canadian winter and the disappointment the lack of my love life was causing me.

Welcome to D.R.

Welcome to D.R.

The first three days were uneventful and one day it rained so hard that I felt like heading back home. My mom and I sat in the lobby staring at the entrance and I moaned aloud about how much I wished someone cute and European would arrive.
Day 0: The Staring

I saw him the next day as I was lying on the beach lounge chair. He stood there very built and confident alongside a shrimpy-looking friend, looking at me with no hesitation in his dark eyes. I glanced at him nervously, then as he caught my gaze, quickly averted it to make it seem I was starting intensely at a palm tree. Minutes later he walked by me, throwing me another intense stare. That evening, I waited to see him at the resort club, but he never showed.

Day 1: Meet Ze Germans

I finally spotted him the next day. My mom and her new friend were urging me to go to the beach with them. However, I was fully set on hanging out by the pool in order to see him again. Surely enough, I finally saw him lazily strutting to a lounge chair. My breath caught and I raised my magazine to look like I was reading.

He noticed me and seated himself on the other side of the pool – right across. However, he made no move to talk to me, so I decided to take proactive action and lowered myself in the pool, as sexily as I could. Deeply inhaling, I swam along the donut-shaped pool, attempting to look both nonchalant and sexy. When I  swam by him, however, he did not even look at me. The jerk was too busy reading a book.

The view of the pool from my window

Dejected, and somewhat relieved, I swam back to my lounge chair. Now he would have to make a move, I told myself. I’m done.

I raised the magazine back to my face and lowered it slightly to be able to observe him at the same time. Just then, he finally put his book down, stretched out slowly and threw me a direct look. Getting in the water, he swam to my side of the pool, to the basketball net which was located immediately by me. Clearly showing off his physique, he started throwing the ball in the net, and might I add – missing a few times. His shrimpy friend came by and they exchanged a few words in what definitely was German.

“Damn… Germans” I thought. I never liked them. They were rude. They were efficient. They were cold. They were cheap. I could go on. I have never actually met a German guy, so these were all based on many World War II movies and the stories of others. But I guess I had to give this a chance. Maybe he was all of the above, but I was on vacation. Normal rules did not apply here.

His goofy friend and he started to play basketball and I, unable to take any more of this bravado and eager to start a conversation, sat on the ledge of the pool. “Who’s winning?” I finally mustered.

The macho man turned toward me with a smile. “I alvays lose.” The goofy friend giggled.

“Can I join?” I asked.

“Ah. Of course!” He smiled widely. “I am Stefan and zis is my friend Christoff. Vy are from Germany. And you?”

As if that isn’t obvious by your thick accent, I wanted to add.

“Well, I’m Russian, but I live in Canada. Did you just arrive?”

“Russian!” He exclaimed. “Yes, vy arrived ven it vas raining very hard. And vy have ten days more. And you?”

“ Three more days.”

“Oh, zat is all? It is too bad.” He looked sad, then smiled charmingly. “Vy should take advantage of the tree days zen!”

No, danke

No, danke

And by advantage, I assume he meant ‘German sex, ya?’ I could laugh at the arrogance! No one was taking advantage of anything. Here he was thinking he was going to get laid, but there was no way I was going to have my first time on vacation. That was not like me.

Stefan was not my idea of gorgeous. I have always gone for the commercial boys, but he was much more manly and strong. The quality that attracted me about him was his confidence, charm and the ability to be so damn relaxed. He knew I would say yes to him, even when I did not yet know it.

“So vy can meet after dinner, yes?” he continued. The basketball was moving from one of his hands to another.

“Sure” I smiled. “Okay”

He passed me the basketball. “You vould like to try?”

I took the ball and threw it in the net. To my surprise, the ball went in perfectly.

“Beginner’s luck” he winked at me.

I swam back to my lounge chair. My mom has returned from the beach and was smiling widely at me. “Who’s the guy?” She asked me in Russian. I told her the story as I’ve always told her everything about my love life. Which to this point has all been PG13. She approved, thinking that Stefan was extremely charming. She then made me go ‘for a swim’ around his lounge chair, which was the most awkward thing in the world, topped off by her flirting in bad German.

As we walked out after dinner, I noticed the Germans standing by the restaurant. I began toNervous_Girl_by_themedusa hyperventilate. To make matters worse, my mom noticed them as well and began to push me in their direction. “They’re waiting for you” she said. “I need to catch my breath” I whizzed, my knees wobbling. Thank God I didn’t wear heels. “You can breathe while you’re talking to them.” She said.

Okay, here goes – I told myself and wobbled towards them. Both smiled at the sight of me. We sat down on the curb and started talking. Stefan told me that he was a professional boxer and was apparently ‘quite well known in Deutschland’. Christoff also used to be a boxer, but now worked as a trainer. The image of skinny Christof getting punched in his goofy face was a bit too much to handle. Stefan, come to think of it, really did look like a 1386-0905-1204-5728professional boxer with his buff body, short hair and somewhat broken nose. Yes, he had a broken nose. Definitely not a picture of a an Abercrombie model.

I drank rum and coke and suddenly it seemed we all spoke English fluently. At least this was the most fun I’ve had in a while. And I felt so wonderful talking to Stefan. He was funny, he was sarcastic and he was definitely sexy. And a surprisingly great dancer. I think it’s all the dancing you have to do in boxing in order not to get punched. That I realized when we went dancing that night and he led me effortlessly. But his manliness was a bit too much. He opened water bottles for me, he threw an angry gaze at a man dancing with me and when I commented I felt bad for leaving Christoff alone, on our way out of the club, told me that “Christoff is not a child. Vy don’t need to babysit him.”

We walked together through the resort and sat down near the pool. The conversation, from what I remember, did not consist of much depth. And really, how could it? We spoke two different languages and no matter how many drinks we had, we would never be completely fluent. All I remember is discussing the word “trousers” for hours and wanting him to kiss me. However he stood in the pool in front of me as I sat on the ledge, looking very relaxed and nonchalant. Definitely in no rush.

I asked him to teach me how to box, because frankly the kissing wasn’t coming, and he started showing me how to avoid punches.Then when I tried to punch him, he twisted my arm around with an ironic smile on his face. Then he kissed me.

I’ve kissed quite a few guys to this point, but this was not a guy. I felt like I was kissing a man. As he continued kissing me, I felt like I had actual desire for him. Many of you will say it’s normal. Of course it is! But not for me, who up to this point had no idea what it was to feel this desire. Usually, I would check off lists in my head, make plans or count. As in 1, 2, 3 aand done! Ok, maybe a 4,5. Now, done for sure.

As I pressed my body to his hard rock chest I felt a curiosity about what it would be like to

I couldn't help putting this in here

I couldn’t help putting this in here

have sex with him. Most guys just kissed me. He kissed me like he wanted me. And it made me want him. After, he held me close to him. He invited me back to his room and of course I declined.

Day 2: Like a Virgin

The next day, I felt a little nervous about seeing him. However, he was playful and just as into me as he was last night. Christoff also helped diffuse the atmosphere through his giddiness and ridiculous jokes.

Stefan threw me into the pool, then jumped in and pressed me to himself. “Everyone’s watching!” I complained, my usual paranoid self.

“Who is vatching?” he would turn me around in the water. “Look.” I would take in all the sleeping red people or others with magazines who really did not give two damns about us making a show in the water. “See?” He would smile to me, a Cheshire smile and then lean in to kiss me and I felt him go hard against me, which was a curious sensation since I’ve never felt anything like it before. Only heard about it. Yes, fo real!

That evening I decided to show off and joined the animators in a Bachata lesson. I knew how to dance Latin and did not need a lesson to learn the basic moves of Bachata, because the dance literally consists of 3 steps. I did it only so he could see just how sexy I could be.

All the animators were impressed with my moves and the instructor ended up dancing with me after the lesson was over. This was perfect as Stefan was right there, watching us. As I walked over to his lounge chair and lay near him, under the towel, he looked at me – with those lust-filled eyes.

“You’re really great at dancing” he said. “I wonder vat else you are great at.”

Really. How romantic, right? To top of the douchy machismo, his hand was slowly running over my leg as his eyes were drinking me in. This guy was clearly interested in having a vacation fling. Why wouldn’t he be? And why wouldn’t he be convinced that at twenty-two, I was no longer a virgin? Even I couldn’t convince myself that was possible.

“What a jerk” I thought as he looked at me with those piercing dark eyes. “There is no way he’s going to get anything. The joke is on him.” However, a part of me wanted him so badly that I did not push his hand away or say anything to put him in his place.

As I was taking a shower later on, I started thinking. Why not have sex with him? Sure, he was from another country. Sure, I would probably never see him again. And yes, he probably was not in love with me and couldn’t be in the one and a half days that I’ve known him. I was certain it would hurt me more than I’ve ever been hurt. I was positive that it was ridiculous having your first time on vacation. However, there was one loud voice within me, telling how much I wanted it. I was twenty-two. I was not a child. The reason I have waited for so long was that I did not want to have sex until I would have felt a desire for someone. And here was this desire. I knew that no matter how painful it would be in the future, it would be worth it. I would remember this beautiful vacation forever. And I still remember myself in what was probably the longest shower in my life.

He knocked on my door later that night and we walked to the beach. We lay down side by side on the lounge chairs and slowly he started to kiss me. As things began to heat up, Stefan looked down at me.

“Mia, you vould like to go to my room?” he asked quietly.

“Stefan, I should tell you something” I began. “I’m a virgin.”

As I uttered those three words, I swear to you, just as in a cheesy chick flick, rain started to pour down. Stefan stared at me, a look of pure bewilderment.

“But you are twenty-two.”

Yes, thank you. I know. Please remind me again so I don’t forget.

“I always told myself that I would know when I wanted someone.. but I have not wanted anyone until now.”

“But I do not vant you to feel bad afterward. I vant you to have sex with your boyfriend. I don’t vant to hurt you.”

“ But you won’t! I know what I’m doing and I know what I want.”

“Ok” he said, as we walked under the pouring rain. “Come to my room. Just to talk.”

We went to his room and because I needed to get something from mine, I told him I would be back. However, by the time I got to his floor, the number of his room completely eluded me. I walked around, quietly knocking on doors and whispering Stefan? but no one responded. Dejected, I walked barefoot to reception and asked them for his room number, but they could not help me. As I walked back up, I felt crushed that I might not be able to find him, but somehow I finally found his door. He opened it in his boxer briefs.

“You left for thirty minutes. I thought you vould not come back” he said angrily and pulled me into the room. We kissed on the bed, but he never took my clothes off. Then, he pried a pillow under him and looked at me with a smile on his face.

“What are you doing?” I asked.

“This is sex” he said. The cocky asshole. But his slight cockiness was unfortunately the thing that drew me into him in the first place.

“I do not feel right about this” he continued with a sigh.

“Look, I told you. I’m fine” I said. I have set my mind on this and there was no turning back.

That seemed enough to convince him and we continued our make out session, until the door opened and Christoff stood there with a silly grin on his face. I was so embarrassed, I almost threw Stefan off of the bed.

“Christoff!” yelled Stefan. “Didn’t I tell you to sleep on ze beach?”

Even though Stefan kept on convincing me to stay with him and even gave me his toothbrush, I decided to leave back to my room. We had one more day left. The final third day.

Day 3: The First Time Hurts…

sunset_033That last day we spent hours just lying by the pool, looking at each other and as the sun started to set down, I realized that this sunset was bringing the end of this short vacation romance. I left him with Christoff and sat on my balcony, putting on makeup and crying. As a result, smudging all the mascara around my eyes.

I put on a light green halter top with a white skirt, my skin glowing from the sun. As I walked by the bar, he called out my name and I saw him sitting by himself, looking quite dejected. I sat near him. He looked at me for some time then said:

“I do vant to see you. I will try to come to Canada in the summer.”

“The summer?” I exclaimed. “I would have forgotten you by then.” As it turned out, I would not.

He asked to have dinner with me and afterwards, we sat on the side of the pool.

“Look, I still feel bad.” He told me. “ You should be with someone you know. Someone you are in the same city with. I do not vant you to regret this.”

“Stefan” I said. “ I am attracted to you. This does not normally happen to me and I told myself that once I’m really attracted to someone, be in Canada or abroad, I would go for it. The only way I would regret something is if I did it with no feeling.”

He looked at me thoughtfully for some time and finally said: “Come with me.”

cartoon-of-excited-kid-receiving-a-gift-isolated-clipart-83383871

Sorry for the perverted comparisson

It sounds very funny, but it is incredible how giddy I was before going to his room. I danced in front of a mirror to “I’m a Slave for You” which was playing through the windows. The irony. I was curious and happy, and not at all nervous. I literally looked like a kid at Christmas.

So, most people tell me their first time was terrible or boring or nothing really amazing. Stefan and I only had one time, but it was the most memorable time I have ever had. Possibly because it was so limited. Granted, I should be honest and say he was a bit of an arrogant prick, even then. Standing in front of me, very toned and quite sexy, he asked me “Have you ever seen a naked man before?” like he was Michelangelo’s David or something.

“Yes” I mumbled. I have not. Only on TV or my brother, accidentally; neither of which counted.

However, it was one of the most exciting moments of my life. Even if it hurt a little. I think because he was the first, and I would spend quite a lot of time comparing others to him. Though to know what I was comparing them to was strange as we only had that one time.

like-a-prayerAfterwards, I changed into a blue dress and we went dancing. I remember that we danced to Madonna’s Like a Prayer, because anytime I hear that song I get a bit wistful. I also remember my mom crying on the side, because “it was just so sad and romantic”. I had to send her back, so she wouldn’t embarrass me.

“I will not sleep tonight!” Stefan told me, but as we lay in bed, he dozed off. I studied his face as if I was saving it for the future. Would we ever see each other? Would we even want to? Something that you share together on vacation does not transfer to real life. Vacation was not real. We were not real there. We didn’t have school or jobs. Hell, we didn’t have anything else to do rather than go swimming, eat, dance, drink and make love.

When I went back to Canada and he to Germany, we would realize how little we had in common.  I stared at him for quite some time, cried a little and left.

Day 4: Road to Nothing

The morning was difficult. He woke up early to say bye to me. I remember that the sky was cloudless, the water crystal clear and it was so just hard to leave. He has offered me to stay many times, but he has never offered paying for the return ticket.  Now, sleepy eyed and clearly wanting to still be in bed, he carried my luggage out of my room. We sat in the lobby for some time, but I just wanted to leave. There is a Russian saying that goes: “You cannot breathe too much air before you die.” I could not get enough of him before I left. I had to leave regardless.

The bus arrived and I gave him a quick awkward hug and kiss before scurrying off to sit down. Tears were pouring under my sun glasses. Stefan came in the bus and sat near me.

USL6000A“You think I am not sad? I vould cry too, but I am a man. I can’t” he smiled to me. “ My little Karandash.” That was his nickname for me. In Russian it meant pencil and that was the only thing he knew how to say. I was trying to stop crying, which was futile as tears kept on running down my cheeks. The whole bus was watching this like in a movie (except no one clapped at the end). We kissed again. “Don’t get burnt” I think was the last thing I said to him. How trivial and ridiculous are the last things we sometimes say to people. He left the bus and stood outside it. Though I believed he was sad too, just for a short moment I saw him exchange a laugh with Christoff. I dismissed it but it hurt me.

Then the doors closed and the bus began moving. Even now, four years later, I still remember the terrible sadness that rushed through me.  We were moving to nowhere, I felt. We were going further and further away from him. Only in the movies, would I ask them to stop the bus and run into his arms. The end. But in reality, I sat there, watching the dry Dominican scenery pass by us. I was certain that this vacation would affect me more than I ever thought. And it did.

2008-2009: The Pain

I came back to the cold winter, that has just began. Days were short and everything seemed so dull and gray. I remember running on the track at my university and looking at the planes whizzing past me in the sky. I yearned with all my heart to go to Germany. I was obsessed with the language, with the country, with the WWII, you name it. Just the mention of anything German would send a pang into my chest. I always wanted to cry.  The only thing I looked forward to was talking to him, but the distance left its mark. Now hequotes-about-long-distance-relationships was no longer on vacation, but back to real life. He talked to me and he told me he missed me, but I didn’t feel it. He never called me on the telephone and he could not even install Skype.  I tried being friendly, I tried being fun and easygoing, but it was all pointless as I felt pure indifference from his side. We weren’t just separated by distance. We really had nothing in common besides those three short vacation days. Our conversations were hollow and filled in by my constant chatter, trying desperately to create something out of nothing. I got angry at him a few times, but afterwards realized just how ridiculous it was to fight with someone who really did not care. I remember that New Years and how I sat in the bathroom crying. He did not even wish me a New Years and when I offered to call him on my birthday a few days after, told me that he was leaving to a friend’s house.

Two months later, I met a Russian guy and started going out with him. At first I was excited about the new relationship, but soon, that nasty feeling caught up with me again. I cried in my boyfriend’s kitchen. I looked up pictures of Stefan online, as they filled the internet. I would see someone who looked like him enter a subway and get a pang in my chest. It hurt to know I couldn’t even see him on the street. In fact, I would probably never see him. The amount of crying he caused me was very cruel. He cut me off so easily, and I was still there waiting for him. I daydreamed constantly about our beautiful meeting in the future. The scenarios and locations would change, but it was always the same image. I would stand in the middle of the city in some bright dress and heels and he would come up to me with that impish smile and tell me just how beautiful I have become.

2010: Switching the Roles

Just like that maybe?

Just like that maybe?

We have stayed in some form of contact over the years and later the roles have switched as he started writing to me.  I just came back from the animator position in Mexico and he saw all the photos I have posted of myself: confident, better looking and more of a woman.  Suddenly, we found contact again and he apologized for the way he has treated me. He asked me if I ever regretted that night and my answer was no. Truthfully, though it has hurt me, made me depressed and full of constant longing for him and for that vacation, I have never until this day regretted my decision. Mostly because I really wanted to have my first time with him. However, it has definitely caused for a lot of vacation flings in my life. It seems that I’ve been wanting to recapture this first time with him. Most importantly, I think it was him who started my obsession with the International dating.

Over the few years, the pain and the longing has subsided. I stopped feeling a pang when I thought about him, I stopped longing to see him and I would only Google his name out of boredom. Last winter, he reappeared again with the invitation to LA because he had a fight there. He emphasized how much he wanted to see me, how sexy I was and how wonderful our reunion would be.

At this point, I was in a relationship with Dominick, but I was not in love with my boyfriend and once again I started fantasizing about meeting up with Stefan. Me coming out of the airport with a feminine coral dress and white heels and him looking incredulous at how beautiful I’ve become. It seems, however that Stefan was much too cheap to actually consider paying for me and thankfully I’ve come to have a much bigger backbone than to fly myself to LA in order to provide free sex on wheels.

At this point, I was not hurt nor surprised as I’ve seen this side of Stefan all throughout the years. And in all honesty, the fact that he never showed any real kindness to me, after being my first was a clear bright sign. However, even though there was no feeling towards him left in me, I still needed some closure. I finally got a wonderful one last summer.

Dreary Hamburg

2011: The Closure

I was in Europe for the summer and my last stop was supposed to be in Berlin. I was not planning to go to Hamburg, though a part of me was interested in seeing him. It was my first time in that part of Germany and the idea of finally realizing that dream that I’ve been having for years was surreal. At this point, I still had Dominick back home, but was planning on breaking up with him. Additionally, I have met Luiz (see the Portuguese) who has flown in to stay with me in Germany for four days. Needless to say, I had no room for another guy. The problem or the interesting fact was that the cheapest ticket I could get out of Germany was of course out of Hamburg, so I would have to go there whether I wanted to or not. And of course, after going over it (for maybe five minutes) I decided, what the hell, I’ll write to him. He was very happy to hear from me, though he was in a relationship. We arranged to get in touch again before I got to Hamburg.

I told Luiz I was meeting with a good friend of mine and he was clueless as to who Stefan actually was. So clueless that he even gave me his phone to get in touch with the German. The first time I heard Stefan on the phone, I felt like we never lost contact. It was just so effortless and natural. We laughed a little and he poked some fun at me trying to pronounce German street names.Then he asked me if I was with a friend. I told him I was. He asked if it was my boyfriend. I told him it was complicated. He asked what my ‘friend’ would do if we met. I told him that my ‘friend’ could manage on his own. He said OK. He would pick me up tomorrow.

All I remember is that the big letters spelling out Hamburg stood out for me, as if they were the eighth 6500287_983ceddec1_mwonder of the world. This regular European city was the one I’ve been striving to get to for years and finally I was here. It was difficult to even believe it. Not only that, I was here with another guy I met on vacation, who while I was staring out the window and trying to register being here, was trying to hug me from behind.

Unfortunately, unlike my dream, Hamburg was dreary, cold and it rained almost non-stop. Also unlike my dream, I was not glowing with a bronze tan, but looked like a pale pimply ghost and I could definitely not wear a dress in this horrible weather. Out of the limited clothing I brought for the cold, all I had was tights and a few sweaters, which was definitely not what I had in mind for all these years. Nevertheless, I got up the next day and piled on tons of makeup I bought in the Berlin bus station, while I told Luiz I was looking for food. Sure, this was not ideal, but at least I would finally see him.

When I didn’t hear anything from him, I checked my email only to see a message in which he told me he had a meeting for boxing and was busy the whole day. When was I leaving? I told him that I was leaving tomorrow and that it was today or never. He told me he would call me later on.

He never did.

He never apologized. He never made an excuse. He said absolutely nothing. So that was it delete-all-tweets-300x243– three ridiculous days, three long years and many excuses. But to actually do this to me when I was steps within his house, was even beyond him. I wrote him that I was done with this, wished him a good life and erased him out of contacts and finally my life.