Tales of Dating… that awkward moment in Phnom Penh

A combination of stories that ultimately resulted in me never speaking to either person again…

While I was living in Yangon I chanced across a pretty cute woman with her friend at a popular bar in the city (a Friday after work drinks place that is also interwoven with the history of Yangon).  Come to think of it I have two stories that start in this place… anyway, back to this reminiscence.

It’s one of the few times that I’ve been very sure of myself and knew straight away that I’d caught someone’s eye and it was just a case of starting the conversation.  I’m not good at the first line… thankfully my totally awesome roomie was with me and, being one of these smokers who doesn’t seem to understand that smoking requires some form of fire to maintain the habit, was looking for a light.  I happily used the excuse to ask for the lighter of the tall Swede (as it turned out) by the bar.  Conversations ensued and all that was left was to figure out how to continue the evening without sounding too pushy (as she was with her traveling companion and rather stunning Cambodia friend).  My roomie and I, along with her boyfriend, were heading to a concert but after some dinner.  My new found friend was determined to find a particular restaurant but I said where we’d be and they were welcome to come along or meet at the gig.  To my amusement, and pleasure, they turned up not so long after to find use eating saying that their choice of eatery was packed.  The gig was great and after a few beers… well… it was fun, although there was a rather awkward moment when the Cambodian friend was either a third person, or would head back to their hotel and wait until they left the country only a few short hours later.

We stayed in touch despite me moving to Thailand and she came to visit a couple of times and I went to Cambodia once in-between.  The second visit to Thailand was rather odd with a lot of projected issues on to me… something that I seem overly sensitive to and pretty much signed off at that point.  A few months later I was visiting a friend in Phnom Penh I’d last seen during my undergrad days (some 17 or 18yrs prior).  Contrary to my better judgement I mentioned to the Swede the day I arrived that I was around for a few days in her city… this was not a smart move in the end.

At some point I’d been checking out an online dating site and out of curiosity arranged a date with a Kiwi.  It was great… we chatted a lot and whilst I liked her, her story was rather messed up and a little tragic.  A story that she was running away from.  The date lasted a good 16hrs and we just hung out in my hotel room chatting and eventually napping.  What I’d forgotten was that the hotel was two blocks from the Swede’s place.  It was my last morning in Phnom Penh… As I lay bed thinking that I must get up and lock the door least housekeeping arrive there’s a knock on the door… I answered to find the Swede standing there asking me to come to breakfast… there was an awkward stand-off at the door as I tried to ensure that it didn’t open wide enough to reveal my date sleeping on the bed.  I told her I’d be out in a minute… of course my Kiwi date used the bathroom first and, as I danced the dance of someone who really needs to go to the loo, I tried to focus on packing.  “How long does someone take in the morning?!”… it was painful.  The worst part is that for some reason I felt like I couldn’t walk out of the hotel room to face the Swede with someone in tow.  I’m now embarrassed by even telling you all of this… it sounds so much worse written down!  So much so that I won’t describe the manner in which I departed but needless to say that it wasn’t very respectful (no, I didn’t just leave).  The breakfast that followed was heavy on coffee and looks to kill, light on words…. not my favourite way to spend a last day…

I’m fairly sure my friend was wondering what I’d become as we headed to the airport and said our farewells.  It was kinda funny thinking about it but I’ll certainly not put myself in a similar situation again…

Did I learn anything?  Other than letting sleeping dogs lie I’m fairly sure that my lessons were simply don’t be ashamed.  There was no reason for me to hide or pretend that I was protecting someone else’s feelings.  I think I was just scared to have made a choice and be open about it.  I do laugh looking back… I’m pretty sure no one was scared for life though…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s