I recently drew the perfect bath. Truly perfect. Exactly what I needed on a late fall evening. I lit a few candles, turned up the music and planed to relax, and possibly nap, in the steaming tub.
As I slid down beneath the bubbles it dawned on me that fall is slipping away and it’s already mid way through November. Mid November. A few years ago in mid November, Veterans Day to be exact, I started down a path of that was filled with hope and excitement and possibility. And it led to the most unexpected places….
On that day in November a few years ago, I committed to online dating. I made myself promise to do it for a year. Unless (until) I met him…
I had no real dating experience, at all, in my life.
Allison encouraged me, Grace advised, Rita supported and poor Tom was on the sidelines trying to help where he could.
Some of the above were excited for me. And one or two were worried that I’d be hurt, if not worse. The field of friends was evenly divided and equally supportive.
Two days into the world of online dating, the most amazing guy popped up. Smart, funny, great writer, big, public job with endless demands on his time. I fell hard. And fast. He was brave and strong and smart. He was a Knight. My Good Knight. And I let myself be swept away.
I’ve thought about him a lot in the time that has since lapsed. I’m not sure why he is so seared into my memories. But there he is, appearing when I least expect him.
Like now, as I’m relaxing in a hot, steamy bath. He floats in to my memory.
Actually, his words float across my memories. We wrote back and forth. A lot. We wrote about life and leadership and family. About our city and our families and our dreams. It was like having a 21 century pen pal. He was always at hand. The texts were epic.
I was vulnerable, in my early days of dating.
He was a commanding presence, with a near poetic gift. I lived on his texts for ages. His job, the chaos in our city and a few other things I learned about later kept him busy. The demands on his time, at that moment in time were breathtaking. In fact I saw him on the news more often that I saw him in real life. And tho I rarely saw him, I somehow felt I knew him. And that somehow he knew me.
Because we wrote. All the time. About everything.
And this damn soak in the tub reminded me of an exchange we shared by text one winter night….. I’d write a line and he’d write a line, back and forth, and a story would unfold. Given his job and the subject matter of some of these exchanges, I have to wonder if I could sell these for big bucks… lol
An excerpt from a text exchange with my Good Knight:
There’s nearly nothing more indulgent than a bubble bath in the afternoon. A weekend away in a well stocked cabin, with an inviting tub, beneath an expansive window, looking out over the lake.
It is endlessly open and intensely private.
This lovely bathroom in the well stocked cabin has an assortment of candles and bubble bath, fragrant and calming.
We agree, the perfect weekend really should include the perfect bath, beneath the perfect window.
It’s an enormous tub, and we’re both comfortably soaking beneath a deep layer of froth. All I can see of you is your smiling face, looking strong and handsome across the swirl of fragrant, playful bubbles.
The snow has started to fall outside the window and is beautiful to watch. The scent of the eucalyptus in the bubble bath is intoxicating. We can hear the fire crackling in the next room. The wine is good and the silky bathwater is warm. Every sense is engaged and soothed in this moment.
I like sitting across from you. I like looking at you while your eyes are closed and you’re letting yourself relax in the moment. Your shoulders are broad. Your hair is damp. You look endlessly happy. I wonder for a minute if you’ve fallen asleep. I wouldn’t blame you, this is perfection.
I feel the water move around my ankle, before I feel your hand. With your eyes still closed, you begin a decent attempt at a foot rub. One foot in each of your strong hands, your thumbs making easy, lazy, sexy circles around my ankles.
I sigh deeply. If the moment could get any more perfect it just did. Your touch is hypnotic.
I lean back and close my eyes and let your fingers work their magic. A gentle massage of my legs, your fingers strong and purposeful. This could go on forever.
The room darkens a bit as the night starts to fall. The logs pop in the next room, the evening is settling in. I know we can’t stay in this tub all night, but I have little interest in moving.
A gentle tug on my foot rouses me from my dreamy state. I open my eyes to see you smiling. You’re happy. You seem to have something in mind, a plan of sorts and that gentle tug is just the start. . . .
I smile back. You are amazing. You are a mind reader . . .
The tug is an invitation to come to your side of the tub. An invitation I accept. To lean back against you. To feel your strength. The hear your heartbeat. To lean into every muscle. To have your arms wrapped around me, in the swirl of the bubbles and the warmth of the water.
There’s been a subtle shift from relaxed to energized and we both feel it.
We don’t want to let go of the time and place, but we want to find new ways to enjoy this very perfect tub, on winter’s night, with the heat of the fire in the next room calling to us.
I lean deeply against you. You hands are playful in the water. Your fingers dance along my arms while you whisper my name.
Soft, lingering kisses along my neck. Fingers brushing my skin. Your voice gently teasing. There is a tenderness to this that belies the energy that is building.
STOP! That’s enough of that. I could go on, but let’s not torture this moment any further.
Lost in that damn memory, my lovely bath has gone cold.
And I got out of my tub last night, wondering what it will take to scrub the memory of that man from my mind.