I hadn't expected to find love, I hadn't been searching for it, I wasn't even sure I wanted it.
But I felt a vague dissatisfaction because something was not right.
I always called him Pup and he generally referred to me as Miss. My partner and I had split up the previous year, after a 13-year relationship.
And not long after that, in July 2012, I had woken up to the depressing realisation that it was my 60th birthday.
When he mentioned that he still lived at home, I felt a wicked frisson shoot down my cradle-snatching spine. 'I've never had a serious girlfriend,' he admitted. That's why we all use dating sites.' 'What would your friends say about you being out on a date with an older woman?
' 'It would be a big mark in my favour,' he grinned. ) He explained that he had divorced his wife the previous year and was attempting to open a new chapter in his life. He had texted me to say that he would get there a few minutes early, 'so that you won't have to wait and have people wonder what an attractive woman is doing alone in a hotel bar'. He sent another text moments before I arrived, saying he was sitting by the window in a darkblue blazer and light-blue shirt. I spotted him right away; he was even more handsome than in his photos, and exuded a collegiate air.
Increasingly I felt that the big-bellied, baggage-laden oldsters on the dating site couldn't compete with these tempting young men. So it was with a gleeful squeal that I found a message from him one morning: 'Hi "Raven", thank you for looking at my profile and sending a wink. Then all of a sudden I found myself unlocking the door, climbing up the stairs and dropping down on to my bed, with Charles gently pulling off my shoes.