- a decent job
- an appreciation of old films and good books
- a dry, understated sense of humor
- a comfortingly 'normal' vibe
However, he did go in a strop with me shortly before our date. My crime was to take too long to respond to one of his emails. In my defense, it had been a tough old week at the School of Hard Knocks. I can't believe he let a few days come between us. Maybe he was getting cold feet anyway, and used my email delay as an excuse, who knows. The cucumber sandwiches went uneaten and the Earl Grey unsipped. I can't say I was heartbroken. I didn't really give it a second thought.
I heard from the cove today, totally out of the blue, asking how I was. I couldn't decide whether to reply or not. I don't know why, but I suddenly decided to 'Google' him. Dear God! It is just as well we didn't meet. I made some slightly concerning discoveries.
Firstly, the fool had lied about how old he was. He had cannily shaved 4 years from his age of 47. Now, I would not have been too concerned about that. After all, Rochester airbrushed his own dating profile. In his 'sexed up' dossier he:
- added 2 inches (to his height).
- claimed to be divorced. He was indeed still married.
- boasted he was gainfully employed with a moderate income. He was unemployed.
- (shockingly) sidelined one of his children. He didn't like being in the 3+ kids category.
None of those things really bothered me. After all, I had a truly spine-chilling skeleton jangling in my own closet, one that I was keeping from the swarthy rogue - namely that I had slept with his brother.
But, it was my second, dizzying discovery about Cash and Carry that rendered me speechless. I discovered the fanny rat was a member of another internet dating site. Nothing wrong with that, I hear you say? Well no, of course not. But this is a very specialist dating site. This grubby agency matches desperate, doe-eyed, colt-legged Eastern European girls with hapless middle-aged English men.
DEAR GOD!!! Cash and Carry has signed up for teenage mail-order bride!
The words NARROW ESCAPE are ringing in my ears!