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As I left for the airport I thought my Dubai Dating escapades were over. That was until a British guy walked in to the crowded airport lounge bar and asked if the stool next to me was taken.

We did the usual ‘where are you from?’ and ‘where in the GCC do you work?’ chat that defines the start of most expats’ conversations. He was working in Qatar, had been in Dubai working all week and was a newbie expat. I however seem to be an aging expat who spends too much time in that lounge as the barman never lets my glass get empty whilst the hoards of men in dish dashas queue to get as much whiskey in as possible before they return to being good Muslim boys.

We managed to cram in a lot of chat in an hour, including the ‘my ex cheated but karma kicked his arse’ story’. In fact with the endless free wine and the banter it could have been a great date but then airport services killed it like the clock did to Cinderella. The tannoy was calling his name to board. And with that he kissed my cheek and ran to his gate. But I keep being told I’ll meet a man in random places so maybe airport lounges aren’t the worse place to hang out? Next time I’m at least getting an email address though.

An ex of mine from many (many) years ago (god I feel old) now lives in Dubai. So, having gone 8 trips without looking him up I messaged to say I was in town all week. Amazingly he agreed to drinks. On the provisos that I didn’t throw a tantrum, get drunk or flirt. Now if I avoided the middle one then the other two would be taken care of.

I got twatted.

In my defence, I needed a couple of nerve steadiers pre meeting and several wines later the bar snacks were not going to take the edge off.

Some guys get under your skin and stay there. This one did and always will. But we’ve both grown up and I no longer want to rip his clothes off and bite his shoulders (ok by drink 8 I did). Gay Husband did.

Because no ex-date is complete without your Gay Husband crashing it, looking your ex up and down and loudly announcing that there is no way on earth that you ever managed to get him in the sack. Charming.

That set the tone then. The two of them took the piss out of me all night.

But The Ex did say one thing that stuck. I started a rant about how all my exes marry the one after me. This one included (and there was an overlap). But he turned to me, looked at me with his piercing eyes and said:

‘Have you ever considered we realise that we’ll never be the one to make you settle down so we move on to someone that is ready?’.

Now at the time the voice in my head screamed BULL SHIT, but the genuine look in his eyes threw me. Do I give off this vibe that I’m too independent for my own good? Are my walls built so high that climbing them seems the impossible challenge?

Maybe I do need to be more open. Or I just need to stop doing sambuca shots and listening to advice based on what I was like when I was 19. Because I’ve changed. Haven’t I?

I have over 580 lovely followers on Twitter and some I’d count as actual friends, despite never actually meeting them. So, when I tweeted I was being sent to Dubai there were a few people I was staring in the direction of, in a virtual sense.

A Twitter Boy got the hint and proposed a day chilling by his pool and a few drinks. Stupid work got in the way so a few drinks a couple of days later were arranged instead.

We met at my hotel bar… which seeing as the hotel bar attracts prostitutes and this was the second man I was meeting in 3 days it may not have been my best idea.

He took me to a complex I’d never been to before, the Madinat Jumeriah, and we made it to The Agency bar just in time for the end of happy hour. After a few wines and some delicious bar food (the crispy fish tacos there are a must) I realise that non-dates beat real dates hands down. There I am, sat with a man I’ve never met before discussing life, the universe and everything (by that I mean dissecting shit relationships and his commitment phobia) and there’s no voice at the back of my head. That voice that says: ”smile, flirt, don’t tell that story, does he like you? He won’t call you you know, etc etc”. It was just a fun night.

At the end there’s no ‘is he going to kiss me?’ because it was a Friend Date. So a double kiss in the back of the cab held no awkwardness. I could skip back to my hotel room with a wine head, big smile and none of that standard post-date bullshit.

So if I do have to die alone surrounded by cats I’m going to insist on weekly date nights with male friends. Beats the alternatives.

The first date I arranged for the Dubai Dating saga was a Tinder date – of course. Yes Tinder is a shallow place full of oddballs, cheats and wankers but you try meeting people the normal way in my situation!

This guy was one of the guys that replied during the Gay vs Straight hook-up challenge but was too late to be the actual hook up. Every so often I’d get a ‘hey Kuwait how’s your week been?’ and because I am unable to ignore messages I’d reply. We’d message for a bit and that would be it. No flirting, no suggestion of meeting and no issue if the messages stopped. He’d text just before I’d gone to Sri Lanka and I’d forgotten to reply. Bored and sore from Dubai Boy’s lack of interest I messaged him. We got chatting and I mentioned I’d be in Dubai the following week.

The night after I arrived my phone rang. I picked up assuming it was a work call. It was this guy! He’d actually used his phone to CALL ME. Something I have ranted about in a previous post. We chatted for 20 minutes, he announced he was picking me up the next day and taking me out. Knows how to dial and be decisive. I likey!

So we meet for our date at the bar in my hotel. Shorter than I had imagined but from London and very outgoing and relaxed. It wasn’t long before I’m laughing my head off and the cosmos are flowing at the Dubai Yacht Club (which, by the way, is a perfect date spot).

I had to meet a colleague later that night – which had given me the perfect out if needed. Because he knew we were on a time limit he suggested a takeaway back at his to soak the booze up and I could call a cab from there. Plus he lived very close to the bar so it made sense. And I’d had 4 vodkas and 6 cosmos on an empty stomach so I was torn between starving and horny.

An order of greasy tacos and dirty nachos arrived and we put on a film. He poured another drink and we finished the food and… Nothing.

By this point my shoes are off, I’m practically stretched out on his sofa like a cat and he’s not looking twice at me. He’d rather watch Star Wars for what was probably the 26th time.

I gave up. He had me in his apartment, tipsy and playful and didn’t twig. So I gave him a kiss and tottered off to meet my colleague.

After that date I didn’t hear from him. But as I knew he wanted to go traveling and I live a 90 minute flight away I hadn’t gone in to it wanting a hot and heavy romance. This took the pressure off as we both knew exactly where we stood.

Logging on to Tinder a few days later I saw he’d disappeared from my messages. Had I been blocked? You don’t block me for being normal (for a change) boyo. Bat-shit crazy psycho stalker yes, but I had done nothing untoward this time. So I text him:

‘I was going to send you a message to say I’m back again next week in case you fancied hanging out. But seeing as you blocked me I can’t’

To be honest I was not expecting the reply:

‘Hey Kuwait. I messaged you to say I was deleting my account and to text me if you wanted to go out again. I guess deleting my account pulled the message.’

Now that wasn’t what I was expecting. So maybe sometimes it’s right to text the boy?

However, he’s away next time I’m in Dubai so it won’t make it to a second. But for once it’s a first with a tolerable ending.

Dubai Dating

Trying to date in Kuwait clearly sucks. You only have to read the last 18 months worth of blogs to piece that together. And having to date with no pre-game livener doesn’t help. In fact some of the more dire dates could have been more bareable with a glass of wine.

So, when I got sent to Dubai for two weeks it was the perfect excuse to line up a few evenings of food, wine, cute boys and more wine.

There was the First Date, the Friend Date, the Ex Date and an airport lounge Speed Date.

Clearly writing up all three in one go would bore you all to tears so I’ll break it down in to a saga. But before I do there was the unfinished business of Dubai Boy.

As soon as I heard about my trip I text him a casual message saying I’d be in town if he wanted to hang out. He replied to say that sounded great and asked when I was arriving. I left it until I arrived and said I was there and told him when I was leaving. No reply.

After a few days I started to get the arse. I only had a few evenings left free and we’d had a great first date and I wanted another. So I turned in to the bat-shit crazy person we all know I am and sent:

Hey you. Name a date for drinks or I’m deleting your number x

Yeah you’ve guessed it. I’ve deleted his number. You win some you lose some. But I had the First Date in the diary, so it wasn’t all bad…

(To be continued…)

So Dubai Boy dropped off radar after a really good date. Usually I know what I’ve done wrong on dates: get drunk, slag off the ex or put out… Or go for the hat trick and really screw up the chance of a second date. But I liked this one. We laughed, we chatted non stop and yet nada post date. He’s replied if I’ve text but other than that, nothing. So I buggered off on holiday with Gay Husband for a week of sun, pool and vodka. And a marriage proposal.

To cut a very long story short which involves me dancing in a bar, Gay Husband refusing to leave, me leaving without him and falling backwards off a stationary moped; I was proposed to. The owner of said moped was a 28 year old Sri Lankan that asked me to meet his parents the next day. I had no idea he was even interested (I may have been concussed). He explained he didn’t want a boring, quiet Sri Lankan girl and instead wanted a fiery westerner. I think he confused fiery with steaming drunk. I declined, told him to meet a nice girl that was attracted to him as I wasn’t and I escaped on the next passing tuk tuk. So I might not die alone – because if needs be I can settle in Sri Lanka.

So global dating continues and I’ve been moved to Dubai with work for a bit. I already have a few dates lined up. And they’ll be dates involving wine. I can’t bloody wait!

First date done. Now for the bat-shit crazy, hair pulling stress-fest that is ‘will he text me’ time.

This one is a Brit. A Brit who lives in Dubai, which is actually quite handy for a girl in Kuwait that is used to doing her own thing. And the date was the best Kuwait-date ever.

He had researched places to go and kept it a secret until an hour before we went. We were going to a shooting range. So in my stiletto heeled boots, jeans and black vest top, with my new Marc Jacobs clutch under my arm I found myself selecting which hand gun I wanted to shoot with. There was a certain Lara Croft element to the evening and it was hot.

At the end of the night, in the taxi, I was wishing he would/could kiss me (Kuwait not being a PDA kinda place for singles at the best of times but it’s also Ramadan). So a peck on the cheek was all that was managed. Toe curlingly frustrating.

But now for the part I HATE. The part that is like waiting for exam results or waiting to hear about a job interview that you thought had gone well but you weren’t quite sure.

Will he text?

There are two camps that have opinions on this waiting game. Those that say I should text him. Those that say I shouldn’t.

The Shoulds:

This group includes my mother and one of my Twitter buddies, Nutty Cow. The argument is that The Rules is psycho-babble-bull-shit from America and has no place interfering in our lives. My mum also draws on experience to back the argument up and says if she had waited for my dad to call her, I wouldn’t exist. Mother also thinks a text the next day saying thank you is just good manners and ‘how else will he know he did well?’. Training boys is like training puppies.

The Should Nots:

Mr Always Right is a ‘should not’. He always says that if I guy likes me, he will go out of his way to text me. If I’m not the forefront of his mind and therefore he’s texting me, then why am I wasting my time on him? He also says that guys like a challenge and by being too available and texty I could come across as needy and easy. Usually sleeping with them on the first date makes the ‘easy’ bit obvious but I didn’t this time.

So like I dick I have checked whatsapp twice and seen he’s been online. And he’s not text. He knows I go on holiday on Friday. So do I wait it out or will I cave in?

I HATE THIS BIT.

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