• Alyssa Piperis

Falling in Love for 48 Hours

I recently had what can only be described as a soft whirlwind of a weekend with a guy I knew for 48 hours. So, I guess it wasn’t even a full weekend. I had a soul connection with this tall, more-mysterious-than-I-typically-enjoy guy, we spent two nights tangled up in each other quietly obsessing over “how rare this is,” and then we never spoke again.

Life is fucking weird and magical.

Maybe “never” is an aggressive word to use ("and then we never spoke again") since this whole thing only happened a month ago, and anything can happen at any point; any door could open. Or reopen, I should say. But it was so surreal and enlivening to have this suddenly intense and intimate relationship with someone, to feel like a couple, and then, as quickly as it started, have it be a memory.

Looking back, I’m not mournful of the person so much as the connection and intimacy. Although, I do wonder about the person. What can I say, I’m a curious cat.

Buuuut, let me rewind here.

Going against my New Year’s resolutions for this year, I’ve been using dating apps for pretty much all of 2017. Rather, I’ve been using an app. Just one: Hinge. It’s my current favorite, and I’ve talked to and met some really great guys from it over the last handful of months. I kind of go through phases, so sometimes I’m very active on it and other times I barely use it for extended periods of time.

In early June, I messaged Mr. 48 Hours. Let’s call him T. T, a verrrry frequent traveler due to his creative music biz job, responded about two weeks later. The night he responded, we had one of the best conversations I’ve had on a dating app, sharing jokes, swapping old school and new school favorite songs, sharing our wanderlust-y dreams, and stumbling upon weird coincidences that convinced us we have to actually meet. He left for a week-long work trip, and while he was on it we decided we were going out right when he got back to town.

T got back on a Saturday afternoon, and we met up that night for a spontaneous first date— the best kind! Our date started with a walking trip to my local CVS to pick up a secret item (his idea!), which turned out to be a disposable camera to document our night. Immediate A+ for creativity and effort! And you best believe I made sure we got two of them so we could swap here and there. After CVS, we went to my favorite little sushi spot, then stopped at Ralph’s to get wine, walked back to my apartment, climbed onto my rooftop…and shortly after we got up there, we were lying on the hard roof ground. There we were, a few hours into knowing each other, bodies tangled up, listening to incredible music from underground bands and artists, kissing, staring into each other’s eyes, and making plans for the future.

Needless to say, it was bananas. And we didn’t get as much use out of our disposable cameras as we were planning to. But we didn’t mind. We couldn’t stop pausing to acknowledge “how rare a first date like this is.” There was a point in which we found ourselves discussing a potential near-future trip to Chicago, his home state, to see a brilliant artist he got me into the first night we chatted on Hinge, and I just stopped. “Somehow it doesn’t feel weird making plans with you.” He agreed wholeheartedly. We wanted to take camping trips together and go to concerts and drink wine. We found comfort in our shared views on physical intimacy and sex outside of a relationship. (We both lean towards the conservative side sexually but are on the liberal side politically.) He warned me that he travels a lot for work, and I told him we’d figure it out. Whatever it is. Or, was.

After eventually picking ourselves up off the roof ground and my walking T out, I went to sleep giddy and so, so intrigued. Sure, he was more soft-spoken than I’m generally attracted to, and because of childhood issues with ADHD he takes confusingly long pauses to think about what he’s going to say. Sure, I wondered how much of his depth was authentic and how much of it was him trying to seem deep and interesting. I couldn’t figure out if I could actually see myself in a relationship with him. Was I into him, or did we just have this fleeting mutual love-like chemistry? All I knew was, some indescribable pull of the Universe had me very curious. Curious enough to cancel a date with a guy that, based on our text exchanges, I thought was actually more my type. But T was officially something, or someone, tangible. I had already met him and felt things. I wanted more of whatever I was feeling, especially because it had been so long since I had felt anything like that. I didn’t think it was possible to feel so strongly for two people in such a short period of time, and I cancelled a date I had been excited about so I wouldn’t be disappointed.

For about 2.5 years now, I’ve always held this one first date close to my heart, because it was above and beyond the best one I had ever had. But after that Saturday night with T, I had a new best first date. And I didn’t know if I wanted any more first dates any time soon. (Spoiler alert: I've since gone out with the guy I cancelled that date with.)

The following night, Sunday, was another one of lots and lots of feels and kissing and deep, butterflies-in-your-stomach eye contact. T was leaving for yet another business trip on Monday afternoon, and we didn’t want to wait a week to see each other again. So, I took a lyft into Hollywood to his insanely hip office he’s barely at because he travels so much. We grabbed beers from the fridge, played darts in the snack room, had a nerf gun war, and made use of our disposable cameras. T finally grabbed all the equipment he needed for his trip from the office, and we grabbed food. I distinctly remember there being moments while we ate our Chipotle-style Asian food bowls in which I felt like the connection wasn’t fully there, but we’d always find our way back to it.

As the night went on, we found ourselves in a handful of lyfts around Koreatown, where T is living temporarily with a mutual friend since he’s fairly new to Los Angeles. We walked to a cool bar (where he got scarily lightheaded out of nowhere and I comforted him as best I could, which felt so couple-y), then to a liquor store where we got a bottle of wine and had a nice chat with the store owner, then we went to T’s place. Upon realizing there was no wine opener anywhere in the apartment, we went rogue and ended up having to clean a kitchen that was covered in red wine. But we laughed (really, really hard; I may or may not have ended up falling to the floor in a fit of laughter), poured ourselves some glasses, cuddled up on the couch, watched an old comedy show on some bootleg Netflix-like program, and stayed up until 5AM (with the occasional quick nap) kissing, trying reeeeeally hard not take it any further, and complaining that we weren’t going to see each other for another week.

Except we didn’t end up seeing each other the next week when he got back, although we both looked forward to it the whole time he was gone. We even had a FaceTime while he was gone—me at my apartment after a night out with friends and him in his hotel room in San Francisco—that rivals video chats I’ve had with actual boyfriends. (So I guess our little rendezvous lasted a liiiittle more than 48 hours.) We were so damn into each other for a hot sec. But, between our exhaustion and his travel schedule and miscommunication, there came to be no communication.

It was all sudden, from beginning to end. But it was fun and magical and fulfilling and unfulfilling all at once. I think I could tell the whole time that I’d be a better girlfriend than he’d be a boyfriend. I knew how to respond to the venting texts he sent me after a long, stressful work day in another city, and he didn’t know how to fill the part of my heart that’s still waiting. He’ll never know how. That may sound a little dramatic and obnoxiously poetic after knowing a guy for 48 hours, but sometimes that’s just how life is. We meet people that make us feel things deeply when we’re not expecting it.

Feeling that kind of intense mutual chemistry with someone so quickly reminded me how rare it is I feel that. I’ve dated more people at age 23 than many people do in their lifetime, but I’ve only felt that holy shit this is so rare feeling two or three times. That feeling, in life, can last months or years or a lifetime. Or it can last 48 hours.

Whether the person I end up with makes me feel that holy shit this is so rare feeling on the first date or a post-first date, I just don’t know. But I’m thankful to always be open and willing—to love and alllll the possibilities. Always, always, always.

After all, you never know until you know.

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