“He had sent a flirt to my profile on a dating site about two months earlier. I had no photo with the profile, so it was just what I had written that attracted him. Or, perhaps, he was one of those catfish that flirted with anyone and everyone, playing a numbers game for someone to respond. But there was his flirt, sitting there for months unbeknownst to me because I wasn’t logging in; I wasn’t even looking. But an empty nest and wanderlust called, and out of curiosity to see what was floating out there, I logged in. And, there were not one, but two messages addressed to me, the photo-less woman.

The site we were on doesn’t allow you to look at photos unless you’ve also uploaded a photo. So, I searched through my photo archives, found a few, and posted them – literally for 20-30 minutes at most. Suddenly, I get pinged with a message. It’s him, and we begin chatting.

We spoke online through the site for about an hour. Then we shifted to the phone. We must have spoken on and off for nearly 12 hours the first day we ‘met.’ He suggested we meet the following day. As much as I had enjoyed our extended conversation, I hesitated because of the differences in where we both were in our lives. Finally, I agreed to meet him at a local shopping mall – I’m not a big fan of taking extended walks outside in the middle of the winter, plus it was a public place, in case he turned out to be a creep. I left my house late, that fear of success or failure slowing me down. I got there finally, late and offered to buy him the first of many coffees we shared that day. We must have walked miles, covering every square inch of the mall and never running out of things to say. From that moment on, we’ve been nearly inseparable. It’s been a year so far, and I have to say that one of the best things I did was ignore all the reasons I was writing him off and take the chance to meet him in person. He’s become my best friend and my love, and the life we’ve been building together is far more exciting and satisfying than the solo nomad empty nester life I had thought I’d wanted.”

—Adrienne & Steve, ages 55 & 55



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