Bells and Cats

Bells and Cats

Some of the best advice that was given to me when I got back into the dating world was to find someone who shared common interests or hobbies. Couples who play together, have a better chance of staying together. I decided that if I wanted a rewarding relationship, my goal would be to find someone who enjoyed the little things in life that make me happy.

I updated my online dating profile emphasizing my interests and hobbies in order to attract someone who felt the same way. I soon began chatting with a woman who enjoyed hiking and soccer. Our first date began with lunch at a Mexican restaurant. While we enjoyed our Margaritas we shared our common love for soccer and how hikes in a park are a good way to cleanse the stressful thoughts in your head.

I could tell that my date was something of a free spirit and one with an artistic mind. Her demeanor was new to me and I was intrigued by her thought process of how life was meant to be lived. After our lunch we agreed to meet at the end of the week at a local park to go for a walk. Again a first for me, I’d never been on a walking date. It sounded refreshing and I looked forward to learning more about this woman.

It was a nice Spring afternoon on a Sunday, a day meant to relax and prepare for the upcoming week. A walk is just what I needed and I was eager to see my date again. The park we chose was one of great scenery and beauty. The trees were in full bloom and this park was filled with several good hills to walk. We began our walk along the paths next to the road, but then ventured down the paths in the woods.

Why had I never thought of a walking date before? This was a great way to get to know someone in an outdoor setting that didn’t involve eating or drinking. During our conversations I noticed that her viewpoints were more liberal than mine, but I found her to be an overall positive person and free of drama. Maybe that was due to her never being married or having any children?

As we approached our vehicles after our hike, she invited me to come back to her place to hang out. She told me that she doesn’t watch much TV, but had several episodes of “Sex and the City” recorded that we could watch. Does she think men watch that show? Okay, maybe for the Samantha sex scenes, but who was I kidding? I took this as a hint and told her that I would love to hang out with her the rest of the day.

We arrive at her condo and as soon as she opens the door, I was hit with the odor of a cat’s litter box. We walk into her living room and we are welcomed by four cats. I am allergic to cats and had to tolerate two cats during my marriage. She starts introducing me to them and telling me their names. Just so I don’t come off like a jerk, I start petting one of the cats. Now all I can think about is to not rub my eyes or this date is over.

I definitely need to wash my hands so I ask her where I can use the restroom. She directs me down a hallway to her bathroom. As I am walking down the hallway, I notice several pictures of bells on the walls. When I reach the bathroom, I turn on the lights and am greeted with more pictures of bells in her bathroom. Very interesting, I can’t wait to hear the reason for her love for bells.

I return from washing my hands to find my date sitting on her couch with her four cats surrounding her. This is going to be a disaster because as she is making room for me to sit next to her on the couch, I can’t help but notice all of the cat hair attached to the couch. In my mind, I am telling myself that I can get through this because if I play my cards right, I think I know where this date may lead.

I decided to postpone the couch sitting by asking her about the pictures of bells throughout her condo. She stands up from the couch and has me follow her into her dining room. In her dining room are three curio cabinets filled with silver and ceramic bells in all sizes. My date starts explaining to me that as a little girl, her grandmother would give her bells to collect. They would go to flea markets together seeking out different bells for her collection. There was even a group that they created for people who loved bells. What? Is she serious?

She told me that even though her grandmother is very old that they still continue to visit flea markets together on a regular basis to find new bells. They were even planning a trip to Washington DC to attend an event for bell collectors. She asked me if I would ever be interested in going to a flea market with her to search for new bells. Immediately, my mind starts to wonder to thoughts of wandering thru flea market booths for bells. “Hell, No!” is what I want to say, but again I don’t want to sound like a jerk and ruin the moment so I said, “that sounds good.”

We make our way back to the living room and sit on the couch. As I am sitting on the couch, I notice the cat hair is now in orbit around me because as I sat down the hair floated in the air. To make matters worse, the cats have rejoined us on the couch. There are two sitting behind us and the other two are in our laps. I am trying really hard not to sneeze, but it is inevitable that is going to happen and with a fury.

The cat in my lap starts to rearrange itself. It is quickly made clear to me that this cat has all of its claws! Did I mention that I was still in shorts from our walking expedition? The claws are not feeling so good. My legs and crotch were begging for some relief from the claws. But just as I begin to move the cat in my lap, the one behind me starts climbing on my back and head. My date is loving it and says, “they really like you.” Yeah, sure they do. Just my luck!

I can feel the allergic reaction I had been trying to delay start to build up and I can’t fight back the sneezes or watery eyes. As my date notices this, she begins to remove her cats off the couch. I thank her for removing them, but now I feel like a jerk. She asks me, why I didn’t tell her that I was allergic to cats and I explain that I didn’t want to cause a problem so I tried making the best of the situation. She told me that she understood and hopes that her cats don’t create a problem for me. I told her that it would be okay and I could get used to it.

My date starts the recorded episodes of “Sex and the City” and before it can begin, I grab her hand and lean in for a kiss. Suddenly, out of nowhere one of her cats jumps off my face before our lips can touch. What the hell just happened? As I am feeling my face, my date starts laughing at what had just taken place. I couldn’t help but laugh either, but then my date tells me that I am bleeding. I go back into the “bell-themed” restroom and look in the mirror. I have scratches on my face and blood is dripping down my right cheek. On top of that, my eyes are watery, swollen and pink from the allergic reaction to her cats. I look like a freaking zombie!

I wash my face and hands, hoping it will help. Then a sneezing frenzy begins and I realize that I need to vacate the premises. I grab some tissues so that I can blow my nose and keep the blood from dripping down my cheek. When I walk back in the room, my date asks if I am okay and ready to watch the show. I told her that I am going to have to leave because I need some relief from the cats since my allergic reaction had got so bad. She understands, but seems very disappointed.

I told her that I would call her later and looked forward to seeing her again. As soon as I get in my car and head home, my allergies get better. No more sneezing and my eyes don’t seem to be watering any more. I look in my rearview mirror and can’t believe that I have three scratches going down my right cheek. How do I explain this to my co-workers at work tomorrow?

Later that evening, I receive a phone call from my date. She wanted to know how I was doing and if I recovered from the cat attack. I told her that as soon as I got back home, my allergies went away. She apologized for her cat jumping off my face. We laughed about it and she was curious if I thought I could deal with her cats. I told her that it would be challenging because of my allergies. She politely explained that she couldn’t date someone who didn’t like her cats. I explained that it had nothing to do with liking her cats, but just a situation that would be tough for me to spend time at her place due to my allergies.

Her next question to me centered on her hobby of collecting bells. Would I be interested in going to flea markets with her and her grandmother to seek out new “bell” treasures? I finally had to come to the realization that I even though I enjoyed her free way of thinking and positive outlook on life that bells or cats are just not my thing. We decided that this just wouldn’t work between us and wished each other the best of luck in finding a dating partner.

Sometimes a person’s hobbies can be detrimental to your health or draw you closer together. I look forward to finding that person whose interests don’t require me to visit flea markets or scratch the hell out of my face.

Share your thoughts on this story or similar experiences that you have had in the dating world. Good luck and keep dating!

 

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Skip to toolbar