Those of you who follow me on Instabrag (englishrosiee_rinsebeforeuse) will probably know that I’ve recently returned from a spontaneous island vacation in Mauritius. It was all part of my whole tinder hiatus and me deciding to visit one of the world’s ultimate honeymoon destinations without a man in tow. Strictly speaking though, I don’t really know how much you can say I was truly embracing my happily single status as I spent several days/weeks prior to jetting off, swiping my life away on Tinder GOLD. For those of you who aren’t in the know, Tinder GOLD is the paid for version of Tinder which allows you to swipe anywhere in the world. To be fair, I’m still not sure how I feel about dating paying for dating apps (feels a little bit like a form of prostitution) but that’s a story for another post entirely. So for the purposes of this post, Tinder GOLD did in fact serve its purpose (and then some) by helping me secure a handful of dates with the island boys. Let me now enlighten you with some of my findings:
Six Dates Nine Nights
Well, let’s start by stating the obvious shall we? 6 dates in 9 nights isn’t too shabby for a chick that has been pretty much out of the game since the beginning of the year. It’s nice to know I haven’t lost my glittering English charm 😉
And Not All Of Them Were Aided By Tinder Gold
Of course, Tinder and the like are great for getting one into the swing of things and helping you create a few initial connections but as impossible as it may seem organic dating opportunities can arise in the unlikeliest of circumstances.
For instance, you could be on your first island Tinder date which isn’t quite going to plan. All my fault, not his. Due to a last minute change of plans, the date became a group hang with a whole group of my newfound island buddies. It was sink or swim for the poor fella. And I’m afraid to report that he completely drowned after being overwhelmed by the crowd. Meanwhile, rather than jumping into save the dude, #englishrosiee was busy at the bar ‘networking’ with her next victim, who subsequently, decides to gate-crash another one of her Tinder dates until she eventually agrees to let him drive half way across the island for a date of his very own. Points for persistence!
Alternatively, you can also almost throw yourself off a mountain, twist your ankle and wait for a knight in shining armour to come to the rescue. And if that wasn’t enough, let him ease your pain (and humiliation) by wining and dining you too. It’s all well and good, I suppose until he invites you over the next to his ‘high-security’ apartment to meet his ‘puppy’. Never forget how you were told never trust a man who tries to lure your in with the promise of puppies. Yup, #strangerdanger!
Regardless of that though, organic dating does tend to provide better stories! Yay for that!
As for Cape Town being a village…
So, you know how I’m always bitching and moaning about Cape Town being a small world and everyone knowing everyone. Yeah, well, I still stand by what I said after seeing an acquaintance’s husband on Bumble just the other day. But still, if Cape Town is village, then Mauritius is something else entirely (what is smaller than a village? a hamlet? my weak mind trying to remember what I learnt back in high school geography lessons).
Anyway, back to my point. Mauritius is minuscule. The island itself is not much bigger than London and its population is about a 10th of that you’d find in the Big Smoke. So while Tinderverse in London was never ending, if you remove the children, old (and non tech-savvy) folk and those in (happy/functional) relationships (therefore have no need for a dating app), you’ll find that it doesn’t take too long to swipe through the whole island’s Tinder population.
Oh and if that wasn’t proof enough, that day I was on busy tumbling off mountains and into the arms of random men, well, turns out one of my forthcoming Tinder dates was busy climbing the same mountain and getting a preview of things to come. I have to admit it was a little creepy when he disclosed the fact that he’d seen me and provided a very detailed description of my activewear.
Old Fashioned Romantics Are Still Alive and Well
Perhaps its the sheltered existence that comes from living on a tropical island, but I must say that on the whole island boys were super sweet (so much so that they’ll get eaten alive by a biatch like yours truly) in comparison to what we find in the cesspool of Cape Town dating. For a start, most of them (except the one my ‘friend’ swiped for me who wasted a week chatting to me and just before we were about to meet wanted to know whether I had a double or single bed at my Air BnB) are able to hold a conversation like decent human beings. This may not seem like a big deal but when you’ve become accustomed to dealing with the incredibly basic level of human (those without matric certificates and the ones who talk about traffic for hours on end) you become thankful for small mercies.
Oh, and back to all things sweet. One of my dates pitched with chocolate for me. #winner. I never even knew bringing gifts for dates was still a thing in real life. It’s comforting to know that nice things don’t just happen in the movies, though. Despite the promising start, however, the date did rapidly go downhill thanks to the intrusion of a white pigeon who the guy insisted was his dead grandfather watching over us. I know I’m in no position to talk but meeting the family on the first date is a bit much even by my standards.
And then there was a Super Date…
A super date on a tropical island in the middle of the Indian Ocean? Surely, things can’t get any better than that? Hmmm.
Strangely, I matched with this jet setter a week earlier in Cape Town. I sorta played tour-guide and gave him tips on where to go and what to do in the city. He splashed a tonne of cash. I didn’t complain. While there was no electric chemistry, he was nice enough so when he mentioned he’d be on the island next week, I figured why not? Surely, it would be blog-worthy if nothing else.
Well, I’m afraid to say I chased a story for y’all but didn’t come back with much to report. He referred to the ‘super’ date as a tale of two cities. I pewked in my mouth a little bit. That’s about the highlight of the evening.
And this leads me to my final point…
When it’s YOU and not them
So you can take yourself off to the most exotic of locations, work your magic in finding yourself a whole bunch of dates, meet lots of super sweet guys that’ll rescue your clumsy ass off a mountain and ply you with chocolate and even provide you with the basis for those stories you are always chasing, but if you are not ready, you’re not ready. Even when you can tick all those boxes necessary for a holiday fairytale, if you are still pining over an emotionally stunted unicorn the fact is not even the real Prince Charming stands a chance. Because you’ll do everything to self-sabotage … run away from dates where you could meet puppies (jury’s still out on that one), shout at a guy who tries to hold your hand when you get an inkling he potentially has a wife or simply bitch and moan about how nobody meets up to your arbitrary height requirements.
But it’s all good. Before I left for my island vacation a friend of mine advised me not to fall ‘in love’ so easily this time. Lesson learnt, right there. However, no-one can (or in my humble opinion should) be on a dating hiatus forever so we all have to start somewhere and there is no better place that on when you are at your sparkliest and most care-free, on holiday. So although, #englishrosiee failed to find Prince Charming on ‘Love’ Island, she did have some good LOLs, adventures, inhaled a bunch of books and caught up on Netflix (and Chill on my nights off from Tindering). And to be fair to those island boys, although they failed to meet my arbitary height requirements (yeah, I know but it is important!!) and were somewhat underwhelming, on the whole, they were a level up from the Cape Town folk. Aside from winning me over with chocolate, all my dates were quite simply nice humans, who provided good conversation (and lots of useful sightseeing tips), some excellent LOLs and they could certainly teach the Capetonian guys a thing or two about subtlety.
So Rinsers, had an island vacations recently? Holiday romances? What are your views on solo travel? Is it for loner losers or does it have its perks? Show me some love in the comment section below. Please and thank you.