Daryl* was a new addition to my roster. He travelled year round for work, so it was difficult to see him. I had to get in where I fit in without much advance. He called me around 10:30 one night, but I didn’t answer because the introvert in me didn’t feel like talking. He called again on the next evening while I was getting ready to hang with friends, and I answered since I was in a better mood.
“I was in your city last night. I called you, but you didn’t answer,” he announced.
“Oh, yeah?” I responded. “I was already in bed when you called.” I really was in bed. I just hadn’t gone to sleep yet.
Now he was two hours away, but wanted to take me out to dinner. I told him about my previous plans for dinner with friends, but suggested we meet afterward. Honestly, I only offered because I thought he would decline the late night invitation, but he agreed. That was okay. I was ready for an adventurous night.
Dinner with friends went way longer than I expected, and I drank too much and was too tired to drive an hour to meet him halfway. so I called after midnight to cancel. I felt so bad about it because I’m a woman of my word. I had said I would be there and I knew he was looking forward to it., but there was no way I could make it. He sounded really disappointed when I cancelled, and even offered to come all the way to me. I declined because I had already washed my face and was in bed. I would have been deep asleep by the time he got to me. Maybe some other time.
The next morning, Daryl called to reschedule. Because I felt so guilty, I was going to drive almost two hours out of the way to meet him instead of meeting him halfway like the previous day’s plan. I normally would have never considered it because that’s a long drive just for a man, no matter how interested in him I may have been. Still, I told him I would make up for my no show, and I wanted to make it right.
The plan was for him to spend the day with family and catch me in the evening. We would hang out in New Orleans, going to Frenchman Street and Mascarade nightclub inside Harrah’s Casino. Then we would spend the night in separate hotel rooms and go about our lives the next day. I made a Plan B to do some shopping just in case things didn’t go as planned and I didn’t feel like I wasted my time and gas money driving there.
I got there around 7pm and he was still with family that he rarely sees since he was always working. That wasn’t a problem. I totally understood, and I said I would do a bit of shopping and catch him later. He called around 9pm to see where I was and said he’d meet me. Cool, I was still out and about. It was about 10:30 with no sign of him. and I called to see how much longer he would be. He said he would meet me shortly. Shortly to me meant, “I’ve got my keys in my hands. Be there in 10-15 minutes.” 11:30pm came and he was nowhere to be found. I was thinking, “Nah, this is that bullshit.”
I was yawning and twiddling my thumbs waiting with nothing to do and it was late and I had nowhere to go since all the stores were closed and I didn’t know this city like that so I didn’t want to just pop up at any old place or bar to chill until whatever time he decided he was ready. At this point all kinds of things are going through my mind. Was he purposely setting me up and intentionally not showing up?! Did I just get stood up? I messaged him and say I was going home. I was really getting tired so it wouldn’t have been much of a date had he came at that moment anyway. It was almost bootycall hours. He told me not to leave and he was on his way. Nah, by midnight I was on the road home. He thought I was still waiting so 20 minutes later he called to ask where exactly I was because he didn’t see me. Too late.
I was pissed but trying not to make a big deal out of the fact that I wasted half a day and my good gas money on him. Part of me wanted to use my points on a hotel room instead of driving two hours back home since I was so tired.
He started saying he was going to come to me now. Hell to the naw. I was already sleepy and driving on a prayer, so I was getting in my bed as soon as I got home. There was no need for him to waste his time and gas like I did. He apologized and wanted to make it up to me. He offered me a spa day and some other material and luxury items to make up for it. It was a nice gesture, but I was over it. Then I recall that I screwed up the day before and he gave me a second chance, so I might as well let this one slide. But just this once. He kept telling me he couldn’t let it ride like that and he was taking the blame so I let him make it up to me. He wanted to fly me out to where he would be working for a couple of days. I declined immediately knowing that being flown out meant that sexual favors were expected in return.
“Who said anything about sex?” he questioned after I declined. “I really just want to spend time with your beautiful self.”
“I’m young, but I wasn’t born yesterday,” I added.
“C’mon, Jessica. I’m not gonna do anything to you, mama.”
I wasn’t buying it at all. We discussed in detail the expectations involved with being flown out. There was no need in him buying the tickets if he expected sexual favors in return because there was a zero percent chance of it happening. As a matter of fact, I wanted a separate room like we agreed for our New Orleans date. He tried to bargain for same room with separate beds, and I declined firmly. He insisted that sex was not on the table, but he wouldn’t even have a chance to try it.
Eventually I agreed with the caveat that I would leave if he crossed any boundaries. I was skeptical, so I made him send me every detail regarding lodging and transportation. I wanted every confirmation from the moment I left home Friday to the moment I got back Sunday. Part of me felt like a thot. I knew thots weren’t the only people that got flown out, but still.
Again, I developed a Plan B just in case things did not go as planned. I would get my own room and do some reading, writing, and relaxing until it was time to fly back home. He found out two days earlier that he was going to be working in Connecticut. I gave him the okay, and he booked my flight. I flew to Hartford, and he picked me up on time. He looked so good, and smelled so good, and his hugs just felt so good. All my skepticism vanished the moment I laid eyes on him. This was going to be a good weekend. We drove about an hour to Foxwoods where he had been working. I did not appreciate the 30 degree weather, and jokingly told Daryl that if he decided to do this a second time, I’d pray that he would be working in Miami or Los Angeles.
Believe it or not, we had a great time sans sex. We discussed our past, present, and futures. We ate, drank, shopped, and enjoyed a couple’s massage. It was an ideal weekend, but we learned that we could never be. I was still young, wild, and loving the freedom of being single. while he yearned for a traditional relationship and was in search of a wife who could accept his hectic work schedule. Sure, not knowing when I would see him again was exciting when he was an acquaintance, but I could never handle it if we were in an long-term committed relationship. That was a completely different dynamic.
He understood, so we enjoyed our brief time together. He continued his search for his mate, but allowed me to satisfy physical needs in the meantime by flying me out a few other times to warmer cities. We respected one another, and that was the best thing for us.
Tune in next month for another installment of Dating Chronicles.
*Name changed for privacy