When I moved to Senegal in October 2015, and although I was moving for work, I hoped to meet someone as well. Yes, I was also looking for love to enhance to my experience and perhaps convince myself that I made the right decision. As such, I decided to put myself out there. I made an effort to go out, go to parties, meet people and make new friends. I channeled my Gemini-side and started making friends quickly and realized that many young and single people were like me. We all shared the similar aspiration with a few exceptions that were DTF . We became friends and after speaking to a few of these people, I found out that a number of them were on Tinder and I thought why not? Yes, Tinder may be a hook-up site but we always hear about those couples that met on Tinder and are now married with 2.5 kids, a dog and a white picket fence. Wait, since I am in Senegal let me change it to 4 children, a cat and a house by the beach ;).
So, mid-November/ early-December I downloaded the app and matched with a few people. Not realising that there was a limited pool of people, I was quick to swipe left on many and eventually ran out of “new profiles”. Nonetheless, I had a few matches that resulted in some conversations on the app, exchanging numbers, whatsapping / texting, a few calls and eventual first dates.
This is what I learned:
- People will omit being single-parents until you meet in person. I have nothing against single-parents but I was not looking for that.
- Tinder does not include height and as such I ended up on a date with a nice-guy who was probably 5″3. I am 5″8.5 so the height difference was quite noticeable.
- You should not develop a strong rapport until you meet in person. I spent about a month chatting with a guy I had matched with before the holidays. We continued chatting while we were abroad just to keep contact and when we eventually met, there was so much anticipation for the meeting that it did not live up to it and frankly we both left disappointed.
- Online pictures are not always 100% accurate (duh!). If all the pictures you see of a guy do not include close-ups or all close-up pictures have his mouth slightly covered (by a scarf), you best believe he has a weird mouth or F’ed up teeth.
- You know how some people don’t really look like their picture IRL and that can be disappointing? Well, if you look better than your picture IRL, that can also be disappointing. I got a “wow you are gorgeous” look when I met my Tinder date who then processed to ask me if I like “classy” stuff and then look disgusted when my response was “sure, why not?“. I’m sorry that I don’t look like I want to hang out in the hood with you.. 8-|
So after these experiences from two dates and being faint at heart, I needed a break. I deleted my profile, removed the app from my phone and decided to live vicariously through my friends. Little, did I know that I would be downloading the app again in a few months…