The meet and greet

After I got back home from Pensacola I decided to get back on Things were going good for me, and I wanted to find someone to play tennis with, ride bikes or go on hikes.

I dated a few guys here and there and even made a friend for life with one guy.

But for the most part, I went on a lot of disappointing “meet and greets”.

This went on for six months, and then I got a message from a guy I was interested in meeting. It’s how I met John, and I mentioned before that he had an interesting profile, which I completely read.

His profile was paragraphs of his take on the difference between how men and women go about dating, specifically, online dating. And, it was good.

We decided to meet and picked a Starbucks about halfway between our two towns. Our plan was to meet at 3:00 and I arrived early so I could find a table.

I always liked to be seated and waiting when I went on those meet and greets. I was sure it gave me the advantage somehow.

So I ordered a tea, and found a table near the window with a view of the front door.

The minute he walked in, I recognized him. He was tall and handsome, with dark hair, a goatee and athletic build. He seemed very at ease with himself and the situation and I thought, maybe just a bit too at ease.

John spotted me and walked over with a big smile and introduced himself.

My meet and greet with John Gavin
John’s profile picture

After he got a drink, we sat and talked for a few minutes, getting past the awkwardness of meeting a new person for the first time. But within minutes, we easily fell into a fun and comfortable conversation.

It’s interesting looking back on that first meeting, because I can picture two hawks circling each other, both confident and cautious at the same time.

When I asked him about his profile on, John told me he wrote a weekly column for a local newspaper as The Online Dating Coach. Intrigued by this, I asked him a lot of questions about where he got his material for the columns.

Turns out, he was a bit of an expert on online dating because he had been online dating for years. No wonder he looked a bit too “at ease”. This was just another meeting for him in a long line of them.

Still, I thoroughly enjoyed our conversation and our coffee meeting lasted right through a dinner that night. As we said our goodbyes, John said he wanted to see me again.

Right away. Like, the next night.

I said, “Sure, let’s go to my favorite pub in Napa”, wanting him to drive to my city this time. He agreed and we said our goodbyes for the night.

Driving home, I was happy. No matter what happened, I had fun and enjoyed our conversation. I was also looking forward to our real ‘first date’ the next night.

That first date would set the pace for the next six months of our relationship.

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