Unexpectedly I found myself in the sites of a happy, fun, outgoing ball of energy who’s enthusiasm was contagious and intoxicating.
He was the type of person who can get an entire bar singing together, instantly take over the lead for a group of people and make things happen, he was the mayor of wherever he happened to be. When he smiled his eyes twinkled with just a touch of glee, and he smiled a lot, especially when he laughed. When we danced, he lead with confidence and joy, spinning me on a crowded dance floor that felt like our own personal world. I couldn’t stop smiling, or laughing.
It was a whirlwind!
It wasn’t about pickup lines, what he did for a living, or how many drinks he could buy. It wasn’t about the car he drives, the degree he has or if he was wearing designer clothing.
We laughed, we danced, we sang. We connected.
He saw me. He truly looked at me, not through me as if waiting for something more important or entertaining to come along, he actually looked into my eyes when we talked. I was in the center of his field of vision, the world felt so far away…
…and it was intoxicating.
He was traveling, alone with a buddy, across Europe with multiple stops planned for their trip. I was traveling alone, across Europe as well, with multiple destinations on my agenda. But we were both here, in this very bar on a pub crawl, in this obscure country, at the same time.
Coincidence? Fate? It’s hard to decide.
When he finally kissed me, it was electrifying. I could feel his energy almost transfer into my body as soon as he touched my face, and my endorphins released immediately. It’s the only way I can comprehend how to explain it. Like magnets, drawn together without any warning, that spark.
I was starry-eyed…for the first time in a very long time.
I felt twenty years younger.
Do you remember those early days of young lust? That quickened pulse, dilated pupils and almost swooning when he held your hand or put his arm around you? Just the intensity delivered by a kiss alone? The electric energy sizzling all around you, even while you danced and sang to 80’s music in a crowded bar, remember?
I had forgotten.
Forgotten maybe, but it was not lost. It was all still there, just buried under layers of self-doubt and low self-esteem, from years of training and practice. I was no longer the young woman of my youth getting gussied up for a night on the town, complete with makeup and a form fitting party dress, ready to take on the world and anyone in my way.
No, this was a completely different version, a version that I never expected to be when I was in my twenties, but here we are 25 years later. Older, wiser and just a little bit jaded. Add in splash of “who cares?!” with a dash of “fuck you” and that’s what your fifties look like.
No makeup, jeans and a t-shirt, fresh from the geothermal spa (without a hair brush) and carrying bags from souvenir shopping with my wet swimsuit sitting in the bottom. I didn’t plan for my day of adventure with any concern for my appearance. I was a mess! I had stopped thinking about myself that way lately, attractive or desirable, stopped considering that I may have the opportunity/option to meet someone while I was enjoying one of the many fine drinks along the pub crawl way. It was a stopover, not a destination.
I was all about being functional, not fabulous.
Definitely not on the prowl or looking for a love connection, just trying to make the best use of my nineteen hour layover. But isn’t that the way it usually happens? The less effort you put into it, the less you care about the results, the better your return? It sneaks up and surprises you, out of nowhere.
Because you’re relaxed. You don’t care, you don’t have expectations and that makes you open to opportunities that you never realized were possible.
We truly enjoyed each other. No pressure, no deep conversations or confessions. Easy.
After closing time, which was nearly daylight, while the crowds filled the streets before wandering off in all directions, we wished each other well and went our separate ways, to our next destination. Two nomads, exploring the world while taking in the cultures of each stop along the way, crossed paths to spend a few hours in each other’s orbit of happiness and discovery.
Single serving companions, for one night only, a limited time offer.
A magical moment in time, and the time was up. It wasn’t the love story of the century, it wasn’t even longer than a few hours on a pub crawl, but it re-energized me and made me see myself in a new light. I felt lighter, happier than I had in a very long time, and confident.
I could appreciate who I am, and how I want to live my life, I can dream big and go boldly on my own to meet my future self. The universe was speaking to me, it was assuring me that the world is big, so big, and so very full of interesting and amazing people, the opportunities and possibilities are endless!
There must be someone out there just like me, who embraces life the way I want to, exploring the world and the people in it with the same fascination and appreciation. Someone that will see me, understand me and want to be a part of my orbit. In fact, he’s probably on a plane right now, heading to Zimbabwe, or the North Pole, and eventually we will cross paths and hopefully our paths will merge for the rest of the journey.
I’m willing to explore the world to bump into him someday.