International Man of Mystery

Posted on Posted in Dating

It’s safe to say that my dating life is nothing short of interesting and more than anything it has become quite entertaining, even as disappointing as things so often turn out. This most recent experience has left me mind boggled and confused. It has me sitting at the edge of my bed with questions running through my head, like how could I not of seen the signs or was I blind from the start?

Many of my readers are women who struggle to find true love in the dating world. Some are men who are curious to see what it is we go through, or how we think, but I can guarantee that most of you male or female, have yet to experience something such as this.

I was sitting on the beach one afternoon, eating my lunch and admiring the view. As I was inhaling a plate of sushi, a man in his early forties slowly approached me from the water. He stopped to say hello and asked me where I picked up my lunch. I told him and after our short conversation was over he walked back into the calm blue water and continued to surf.

About 20 minutes went by, and back he came. He walked up once again, but this time he asked if he could take me out sometime. I talked to him for a few minutes and then agreed to go out with him. I didn’t get a strange vibe other than he alluded this intriguing level of confidence. He told me he was in town for business but lived in Argentina. He said his family owns a winery in Argentina and he works with businesses across the world to distribute and market his family’s wine.

I pushed him off for a couple weeks before setting a concrete day to let him take me to dinner. When the night arrived, he picked me up at 7pm in his black Porsche Carrera. He was dressed in distressed jeans and a blue button up long sleeve shirt. He seemed put together and still, I didn’t pick up any weird vibes.

He took me to dinner at Paradise Cover, in Malibu. Dinner was great. The conversation was easy flowing. He opened up about his line of work and I discussed mine. He seemed impressed by my passion for writing and photography. He also seemed a little nervous that I was a blogger who could potentially write about him. Knowing my family lived close by also seemed to put him off a bit.

After dinner, we continued to talk and took a walk on the beach. The sky was clear and the ocean’s waves were crashing down at the edge of our feet. He was romantic. Held my hand and told me how much he liked me. We walked back towards the restaurant and began to leave. When we pulled up to the parking exit, we had to pay for parking with our little ticket we received upon entrance and he suddenly became frazzled. He said he didn’t have a credit card to pay for the exit fee, so I gave him mine. He then gave me $10 in return. I did not see him pay for dinner as I went to the restroom when the check came, so I am assuming he paid in cash.

When we arrived back at my house where he would drop me off for the evening, he told me he had a 6am flight out to Atlanta for business and would be back in town the following Thursday. He said he would bring me back a gift and off he went. He texted me about ten minutes after he left and said he had a great time and once again, “I like you so much.” Although most women would reply right away saying thank you blah blah blah, I didn’t say anything. I just put my phone down and called my girlfriend to come over to hang out. So she did and we ended the night having girl talk and all that fun stuff.

That was the last I’ve heard from this man. My mom and I sat around the following day Googling this mysterious creature and couldn’t find a single thing about him. What we did come across was an article about the winery he described and the full description of himself that he gave me. The only problem was the photo of the person being described was not of the man I went out with. It was a twenty-something year old with the same name and same description, but a totally different photo. Confusion sank in.

When we began putting all the pieces together, things did not add up. I started to believe that everything he told me was a lie– his name, his occupation, everything. I put my phone down and just looked at my mom with fear and shock in my entire being.

I just spent 4 hours with a man who could of been a criminal, con-artist, or a total fraud and that was my suspicion.

I went to bed that night at 6pm. I thought to myself, “How could I allow myself to take such a risk?” I didn’t know this person and only after 2-3 conversations I agreed to let him take me out. Got in his car and let him take me anywhere. I trusted he was who he said he was. I believed the stories he was telling me. I asked many questions about what he did, who he was, and thought I was taking all the proper measures in getting to know this person, but it turns out I didn’t learn a single truth about him.

It’s been a few days, so I decided to send him a text asking how his week was going so far. His response? You got it! Nothing. He didn’t text back. He vanished into the great sea of mystery and has been added to my list of dating disappointments. His whereabouts is unknown. His motivation to take me out could of been a number of things. Once he learned more about me and saw how I was, maybe he decided I was not such an easy target to get away with. Maybe he realized over the course of a few hours, not much was going to get passed me and I would soon figure him out, so he vanished. This is my most reasonable explanation, but I am sure there is much more to his motivation.

Maybe I will hear from him when he returns to town, but I would rather leave it at this. I would rather not bother or be bothered by someone who raises so many red flags. So many that it looks like a landmine and my only option is to run.

To be continued…

No word from this mysterious man since the night he suspiciously attempted to kidnap me and sell me into modern slavery. I took the $10 he gave me as reimbursement for parking (because he didn’t have a credit card) and I donated it into the offering plate at church Sunday.

I’ve since written a blog on, Protecting Yourself from Human Trafficking.  I want to raise awareness on this issue as it was not something that would even get close to happening to me; because it did, I want to help educate people on the warning signs and what to do in case you find yourself in a similar or much worse of a situation.

 

UPDATE:

After a few weeks of no contact, he texted me and asked to take me to dinner. I politely declined. I told him, “I was attending a human trafficking conference with my uncle that weekend and wouldn’t be available to get together.” I also told him that I wouldn’t go anywhere with him until I knew more about him and the truth to who he really was. He continued to try to get me to agree to a date, but I still declined.

When I woke up a couple days later I was caught a bit off guard when I received a LinkedIn request from this character. It was certainly him in the photo, but the name, his job description, and location of residence was all different than what he had told me when we spent time getting to know one another. I was blown away by the guts this man had to reveal himself in such a way that confirmed he was even more of a ^$^%$ than I originally thought.

This whole situation was so frightening. Yes, I was Catfished. I didn’t meet him online. It wasn’t a blind date. I didn’t seek him out through an app or anything like that. I met him the way I’ve always dreamed to meet the man of my dreams, naturally; in person. The events that unraveled were just so alarming and discomforting.

I wrote this blog, because I want people to know and be aware that this kind of weird, twisted, misguided type of thing happens. It can happen to anyone, not just me. Yes, strange things happen to me quite often and I believe they are to be used as stories and lessons for others who are willing to learn from it all. If I could ever take something that has happened to me and turn into a story to impact others, that would be perfect. So that is what this all was. Not to bash this poor fellow who couldn’t be comfortable living in his own skin or reality, that’s not what this is about. This is just some wild case of my long list of dating stories. Lessons learned. Keep your guard up. Investigate. Listen more than you speak.

And watch this video:

Image via We Heart It 

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