He was 25, a guitarist (although not, to my knowledge, of any particular skill or renown) and French (to the extent that his dad was born in Toulouse before moving to Brooklyn to marry his American mom). Let's call him Sean.
Heartbroken from a tumultuous relationship crashing down around me, I had (in retrospect, VERY misguidedly) been working my way through the friends of my best friend's boyfriend, picking up a free cocktail here, an STD there...
Sean, who asked me out following a mild flirtation over a soggy Camel Light at a house party, was good-looking and charismatic. Was my luck about to come in?
A flurry of upbeat, witty texts preceded our date yet when I arrived at the designated location, a museum, he greeted me with an almost accusatory: "You dressed up."
I was wearing my world-weary first date outfit of that era: a belted black jumper dress and brown leather knee-highs. Perhaps Sean, significantly shorter than I remembered, was threatened by the modest heel of my boots?
Nevertheless he rallied.
After several drinks he whisked me off to a strikingly sterile Italian restaurant...and told me in no uncertain terms that he had fallen in love with me.
After several drinks he whisked me off to a strikingly sterile Italian restaurant where, over a pesto e pomodoro, he grabbed both my (probably quite sticky) hands and with exuberance told me in no uncertain terms that he had fallen in love with me.
Doubtful yet optimistic, I went along for the ride.
We swept along the riverside hand in hand, Sean poetically, urgently, declaring his affection between frantic kisses. Illuminated against the night sky, seemingly fueled by adoration, Sean the musician began to sing a capella. Songs by Bob Dylan, Nick Drake, even Paolo Nutini, drifted down the river until, thirsty from his vocal exertions, he was keen to locate another bar.
It was past midnight by this point and decidedly chilly so with a much-boosted ego and early onset hypothermia, I decided to call it a night.
I never heard from him again. Naturellement.