My date with Monica got off to a bad start — for her.
We were both standing outside Angel tube station, not knowing what the other looked like, when I sent her a text saying I was next to the bank.
I then watched an attractive leggy brunette, phone in hand, make a sheepish beeline for a nearby gentleman who was taller, younger, cooler and more handsome than me.
I could see what was happening but it was too late for me to stop her and the guy brushed her away dismissively. Then she turned and saw me bounding towards her, grinning.
I was never able to recover from the disappointment she clearly felt at that moment.
To be fair to her though, her chagrin was barely detectable - she was positively charming.
And so was I. Often when faced with very hot women I get tongue-tied, but for some reason on this occasion I was in great form — or at least what I thought was great form.
We sat down to get a drink and I could barely keep the smile off my face. This was easily the nicest-looking woman I'd ever encountered on an online date. And from my experience, women who go on online dates are there for the taking. I'd struck gold.
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Monica was brought up in Ecuador but moved to Spain when she was 15. Her English was excellent, and she'd been in London for two years working in a fashion studio.
She asked: "Do you like fashion?"
I gestured theatrically at my outfit and gave an arrogant nod. It was a joke, although she was rather quick to acknowledge that I was clearly being sarcastic.
But she seemed like she was having fun. At least, she was laughing at most of my attempts to be funny, and I was mildly encouraged.
We discussed the Spanish economy, the Lovebox festival, the fact that some Ecuadorians (or were they Colombians?) once tried to beat me up in Camden. The kind of chat that could well end up with snogging.
Not that Monica was my perfect woman; there were a couple of things she said that put me off. Like her apparent interest in holidaying in Abu Dhabi, which I think would be a rubbish place to go on holiday, or the fact she'd never heard of Oxfam.
But I was nit-picking; she was bubbly and beautiful clearly worth pursuing.
We moved on to another pub and by the end of her second pint, Monica was obviously feeling a bit merry. This would normally be a crucial point of the evening — and so it was, as she said it was time to go home because she didn't want to get drunk and had to be up at 6am.
I offered, out of genuine chivalry rather than grubby opportunism, to walk her to her nearby flat.
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Not only did she decline, but when she leaned in to give me a continental goodbye kiss, she did so with her face pointing at a 90 degree angle to mine — so as to leave me in no doubt that I should be aiming for the cheek, and not the lips.
It was such an emphatic manoeuvre that when I sent her a friendly text the next evening, I knew I'd never hear back — and I haven't.
And I can trace it all back to that first moment: I can precisely recall the barely perceptible twitch of deflation that crossed her face when she realised I wasn't that other bloke.
Not that I begrudge her, I've been there myself plenty of times. And fair play to her for making the best of an imperfect situation for the rest of the evening.
Still, I wonder if all daters should strike a binding agreement that states either person can call off a date within the first 60 seconds if they think it will be a waste of time.
In fact, that could and should be the basis for a new dating website. I am copyrighting those last two sentences.