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Fish Mousse and Marshmallows

We stayed a while, just enjoying each other company knowing but never mentioning that we would likely never see each other again.

Loni James
Loni James
4 min read
Fish Mousse and Marshmallows

A Date in Every Country: A Series
Date #5 Part 2
Location: Nicosia, Cyprus
Nationality: Cypriot
Activity: dinner and the sea
Time: 4 hours
Will see again? Not likely
Connected via: Tinder

We are gonna jump right in to this one. For those that asked, the 9pm man from the attempted double header texted the next day saying his phone had died hence the lack of response. True or not, I was keen to see Date #5 again so I chose not to reschedule with him. When Date #5 found out I was staying an extra night he quickly asked me out. He suggested grabbing fish meze in the next town over to which I agreed. He picked me up and the mood was instantly lighter. With some playful banter, we drove over to the next town. He let me know that the restaurant wasn’t fancy and would likely be full of old locals but he loved it and that’s why he chose it. I was quite happy as part of my desire for going out with locals is to try some traditional spots that are not on the tourists’ radar. As we drove through town, he pointed out where he spent time with his family and where he came to swim. Seemed like very typical date conversation and I learned more about his work and his goals of completing an Ironman.

We arrive to dinner where he orders us small bottles of wine all the while saying he doesn’t really enjoy it and will only have a single glass. I tease him that he’s ordering it just so I’ll drink it. He gives me a sassy smile and I happily oblige and do just that. The next hour was punctuated by a few glasses of local wine, some sparkling conversation and all the fish you could eat. He ordered for us and it was fish in every form you could have it - fish with their heads on, big fish, little fish, calamari, fish mousse, you name it - we ate it…or tried to. I must confess that when they serve an entire fish that I have to dismantle myself it loses some of its charm. I gave it a valiant effort and most of it was delicious lol. To be honest, the wine got my best effort though. Gold star to meeeee!

After dinner we went for a stroll along the dock, holding hands under the moonlight. I told him of growing up and how I would walk the docks with my grandmother reading aloud the names of the boat completely missing half of the innuendos. My innocent teenage self had no idea regarding the grown men who named their boats - Wet Dreams or Tail Chaser. He was amused by my story and we wondered aloud how it would be to live on a boat or sail across the ocean. It was simply lovely and when we reached the end of the dock we finally kissed again and wow - they were some goooood kisses.

Maybe the wine, maybe the passion but it was the dessert a girl needs.

We strolled back and neither of us were ready to leave so we crawled over the rocks to sneak onto the neighboring beach. We found a beach lounger and in retrospect we should have chosen one a bit further cause I think we might have a put on a show. (Sorry not sorry!) I sat between his legs, his arms wrapped around me and we stared at the dark sea and watched the lights of the planes as they landed nearby. This turned a little frisky and I can’t say that I minded One. Single. Bit. We stayed a while, just enjoying each other company knowing but never mentioning that we would likely never see each other again.

As we were trying to leave, he heard from one of his kids who was bringing a special snack to school tomorrow and was in desperate need of mini-marshmallows. The hunt began! I love that he was so keen to make this happen for them despite it being late on a Tuesday. So instead of driving home, we brainstormed and crossed our fingers that a gelato shop would have some. We figured they might cave to our desperate situation and sell us some. Off we went in hunt of gelato shops, going from shop to shop asking each and every one. Cypriots love their gelato because there must have been 5 shops in a row!  Well you can’t buy marshmallows without buying gelato so I suffered and enjoyed some second dessert. Marshmallows acquired! We headed back to the car and he drove me home. Our goodbye was simple and I sensed that communication would not continue and this was it. My intuition proved correct and a few days later he unmatched me and chose not to text me. I had this expectation going in so I was not bothered by this ending. He will simply be the man from Cyprus - a lovely memory and yet another chapter of what is surely to become a book thanks to you all.

Teaser: I’m in Turkiye at the moment and oh my goodness - I cannot wait for you to read the next installment! It should have you laughing your butts off. Happy travels and thanks again for reading!

Staring into the sun while hiking Aphrodite's Trail
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Loni James

As I collect and record these stories, I hope they make you laugh, curse and dream of far off places. May they inspire you to cross oceans and meet plenty of interesting people along the way.