When you’re single, one of the best things about a night on the lash is the delicious, tingling anticipation of meeting someone. As you shimmy into a silky top or scarlet lip, you wonder if later on a cheeky hand will sneak under a hem or a pair of tipsy lips undo your perfect pout.
Whoever coined the term “Summer of Love” has clearly never tried to date women in London. I’d somehow imagined that all the smart, witty, lovely women who’d been hibernating through the winter months would suddenly burst into my life in a storm of glitter and jazz hands. “Fooled you!” they’d cry, whisking me off to some fabulous muff convention where everyone drinks champagne in swishy skirts and coos over me.
Doubts have begun to creep in, like ants crawling over a summer picnic. It starts with a relatively innocent request: a sexy photo for her to moon over late at night. So one evening I get home from the office, wriggle into a slinky LBD and dim the lights ready to titillate my paramour.
I’m intrigued that thus far I haven’t been on a date with any bonafide lebians. Tinder seems to be awash with the curious, the bewildered and the confused, the kind of women who use the ‘two girls’ emoji on their profile and then collapse into paroxysms of doubt when they get a message from an actual girl.
When you’re dating women there’s a pitifully small pool to choose from. I’m not even sure it can fairly be called a pool. It’s more of a pond or a puddle or a light drizzle or an egg cup full of water. Where’s my girlfriend? I think mournfully, prodding the egg cup.
One of the tougher aspects of coming out in later life is realising that many of the dating rules as you knew them no longer apply. You can no longer lollop around in a bonnet waiting for a man to ask you out or make all the moves. You can’t rely on a man to pick the first date, pay the bill or do that gorgeous, end of night lean that makes your legs wibble.