So if this Challenge were a Hollywood script, then I would have been ditched by Henley Boy at the start, embarked on my crazy 30 Dates challenge, only to fall for the Enigma early on…. (Yes I know that’s the actual truth but bear with me!)
I then would have struggled with a moral dilemma of whether to continue on with the Challenge, wondering if it was fair on The Enigma to continue with another twenty or so blind dates, all the time unawares that he was embarking on his own personal challenge to bed as many women around London as possible. (OK so this bit is where the fiction comes in, before The Enigma sets his lawyers on me!)
Cue the return of Henley Boy, complete with heart-melting reason for two months of silence. Leaving me to decide between my 10/10 date, and the man who set the original challenge ball rolling. Doubting Henley Boy’s motives, I choose The Enigma, only to discover he only took me on the best blind date of my life as a bet, and was never interested in anything other than a sparking online review.
HB returns, whisks me away, and we both live happily ever after!
(Spot the one who watches way too many rom-coms, and is off to Los Angeles later this week!)
Unfortunately real life doesn’t quite work like that, and whilst I am gladThe Henley Boy had the balls to get back in touch with me earlier this month, and I at least partially understand why he ‘ran for the hills’, to coin his phrase, that doesn’t mean the Henley Boy has found his way back into my affections. If anything, my interactions with him since the unexpected midnight phone call have been pretty disappointing. I’ve texted him a couple of times, and every time he takes days to reply and even then it’s impossible to get more than a few texts in a row from him. A pretty stark change to the lengthy text conversations we shared when we were first getting to know one another.
In the wise words of Miss 32, if a guy is into you, he will text you. If he doesn’t text you, chances are, he’s just not that into you. And so no matter, how perfect for me I thought Henley Boy was at one point, it’s evident he doesn’t feel the same way. Because frankly, he would have never treated the way he did for those two months, if he was interested in me.
And that’s fine – because inadvertently Henley Boy has played a far bigger part in my life than most guys who’ve dicked me about over the years! For a start, if it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t be writing this post from New York, and the blog wouldn’t even exist! And then there’s all the wonderful people I’ve met or reconnected with because of this challenge, and the ever developing opportunities which have emerged as the blog has grown in success. Magazine articles? A book deal maybe? An actual Hollywood film? Who knows, a girl can but dream!
But what other lessons can I learn from the Henley Boy? (Other than to never visibly fall for someone that blooming quickly … no matter how quickly they appear to be falling for you!).
I guess this is where I am completely inexperienced in love. I’ve grown up watching romantic comedies, and listening to fairytale stories where love at first sight exists. ‘Love’ has always been marketed as something you find properly once (or in seldom, tragic circumstances, perhaps twice), and when it hits you, it hits you hard. It probably doesn’t help that that’s how my parents got together – in a fairytale story, where they fell for one another at first sight (For anyone who hasn’t read it – Goldilocks & The Fairytale Couple is still probably my favourite post of this entire blog).
But is that really how it happens? Does true love come with a ‘Henley Boy Effect’, where from the first moment you get chatting you just connect, and you can remember the first time you saw him, like a freeze-frame in your head?
Or is that simply true lust? When you’re so instantly attracted to someone that it takes your breath away?
I know I’ve felt that way about four guys in my life, and if I think about them now, I can play a showreel of those first meeting snapshots in my mind. Picture perfect moments of my life, frozen in still in my mind.
What should I be looking for, as a thirty year-old singleton?
Do I just need to find another guy who has the ‘Henley Boy effect’ over me, and makes me weak at the knees from the moment we first meet? Or is the reason that was never going to work because of the effect HB had over me? Should I be looking for the slow burner? The type of guy who it takes me three, four or even five dates to work out if I really fancy him?
I know whoever he is, and however he achieves it, if I am to give up this fun new single life I’ve only recently properly begun to enjoy, then the next guy to win me over will need to have the Eclipse Effect …. But interestingly in a lot of ways, this Challenge as a whole has achieved the Eclipse Effect … or at least managed to give me some sober perspective on the HB situation, and enabled me to make the most of being a single twenty-something in London.
I guess we’ll all (me included!) just have to watch this space!
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx