When A Stranger Becomes A Friend And Then A Stranger

tent drawing by Simon Richards
Drawing by Simon Richards

It was about a year ago when we met. He approached me while I waited for a beer and asked to pet my dogs at a small town concert park. He was shorter than what I usually date, wore glasses, and bald. He dressed very simple but you could tell he had style and good taste. His name was Bob.

Oh Bob… We chatted quickly and discovered we both were sculptors. He was in shock, a conceptual artist like me was living in his small town. It was as if he had just discovered gold. His eyes and body language all lite up. We exchanged phone numbers shortly because he had to leave to have dinner with his sister.

I left the beer tent area and went to find my neighbor as I walked to her, a few guys started talking to me. One in particular pressured me to take his phone number wanting to go dancing after the concert. At first I was interested but the more I spoke to him the more I regretted giving him my number. I went and sat down on a picnic blanket with my neighbor. About an hour passed when the second guy from the night came over and tried to get me to chat with him. I was so not interested, so I looked at my phone and realized Bob had messaged asking if I was still at the concert. Then as I glanced up, there was Bob standing in front of me with two beers in his hands. One for me and one for him. I don’t know why but I immediately felt something strong for him. I knew he was different. Oh boy was I wrong.

That night he walked me home and we talked non- stop but before we arrived to my house he confessed he was married and getting divorced. I was super surprised since it came out of nowhere. I empathize for him since I had gone thru a divorce very recently. He gave me a pop kiss good night as we said goodbye. As I walked into my house I recall feeling excitement for the unknown.

Bob sent a few text messages throughout the following week and seemed normal. Well one day I arrive home after work and my neighbor approaches me as I’m walking out of my car and asks if I know a bald guy with glasses. I immediately get alarmed. They tell me he was circling around the block and kept looking around. So he approached him to question him what he was doing, turns out he knew him from high school. I quickly let him know I had just met him and he had walked me to my house after the concert one day and that was about it.

Good night kiss

I don’t recall if I then texted Bob or Bob texted me but he ends up telling me he kept circling because he wasn’t sure where I lived and he had something he wanted to drop off. So I tell him, it’s the house on the corner and he comes over with a rose carved out of stone. Who in the hell carves a girl he just meets a fucking rose made out of stone? I was in on cloud 9. I thought it was so sweet, intense but romantic. I accepted it. We talked so more and I realized that his situation was as it seemed. He was still living with his wife and they still hadn’t gone thru any divorce paper procedures. I explained the only thing I could offer him was my friendship. He agreed that was the best but his body language and interactions really said something else. He seemed so intrigued by me and like he never wanted to leave. We made a date that weekend where we went to an art museum, did a little shopping where he insisted in buying me something from one of my favorite stores and then had dinner. He was truly a gentleman and someone I could really see myself with.

champagne drawingTowards the end of the night, we sat in my basement and we shared some very personal things. I wasn’t expecting him to stay after our date but he didn’t seem to want to leave, so I invited him to stay longer. He kissed me once but it was very non-sexual. We drank a bottle of champagne. I offered him my guest bedroom to stay the night or  my bed to share but clarified that he couldn’t cross the line and it would be strictly sleeping. He agreed to stay. Nothing past that happened. We went to bed and when I woke up he was gone. I was like WTF, wondering what time he had left. Then immediately after I woke up he texted  me he went to get us coffee. He said his daughter had messaged him that she heard noises in their house and was home alone and scared. I thought it was strange since his daughter was sixteen. I let it go and accepted his answer.

I don’t recall  how many days or weeks passed but I know I had sent him a text that was very innocent and received a text back, saying “Only friends”. I knew then that his wife had his phone. I responded, “..duh”. Then I didn’t hear from him for a few days. Then a weird number calls me. I answer and it’s him calling from his grandparents house. He tells me his wife saw my message and got mad and threw his phone. Then I knew everything he had been telling me was definitely way off than the reality. I told him I had to go, I was on my way out to the gym. He said he wanted to get away from home and was staying at his grandparents house and that they weren’t there.  He was contemplating whether he should drink or not. I think I told him, to go ahead and relax there, or something along those lines. So I hang up, and walk to the gym, work out about 45 mins. As I’m sitting on the reclining leg press, I look up and notice this mother fucker standing at the locked door with a water bottle up in the air. I almost fell over. I was in shock. I couldn’t believe he had followed me to the gym. I rushed over to open the door, and asked what he was doing there. He’s response was “I thought you needed water”. Being a good friend, I figured he just needed someone to talk to. I had empathy for him. I knew how it felt to be going thru a divorce and still live in the same household. We chatted a little while I did my last set on another machine. We offered to give me a ride home, so I accepted.

We got to my house within 2 minutes or less. I walk in, set my gym bag down. And somehow manage to chit chat standing in my kitchen. My dogs then begin barking. It’s about 10-11pm at night. They NEVER bark, especially so late at night. I thought it was odd. I let them outside and they continue barking and run to the wooden fence that surrounds my entire back yard. I begin to really think that’s odd. Nothing comes to my head except that I feel safe since I own a gun. I tell Bob about my gun and he’s impressed and asks what kind, so I proceed to ask him if he wants to see it. I bring the dogs inside, lock the doors, and walk to my bedroom to pull out my gun. I open the case, empty out the bullets, and hand it to him. Then he hands it back to me and says that’s nice. All of a sudden, BLAP!! A loud noise is made outside my front door. I jump, and we both run towards the living room. I’m still holding the gun (no bullets); scared shitless. Still thinking so naïve, literally thinking it’s a spirit rather than an intruder. Lol.

gun with rose2.jpgI yell at Bob, and say “That noise was my front glass door”, the door that is in front of my main house door. He begins to star thru the peephole. He sees no one. It’s dark. He opens the front door, peeks his head out and screams out “HELLO?”….”Anyone there?”. He steps out a little further, turns towards the fence area and garage and yells “Stephanie??” My heart drops, and then I remember I had joked at some point in the night, at gym or inside the truck, saying “Your wife probably follows you” and laughed. He yells “WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?”, she response “NO BOB, WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?”. At this point I can’t believe this is happening on my front lawn, wondering when is the policing going to get called and when are the neighbors going to come out and watch this?

She begins to walk closer to my front door, I come out and yell “STAY RIGHT THERE!”,  and show her my gun. Lol. NO IDEA what in hell I was thinking. It was pure instinct. I knew the gun was unloaded, but at this point of shock, Bob doesn’t remember and asks me “Is it loaded”, I reply with a smart ass comment “You just saw it”. Not answering him at all. She replies “I’m not like that, you have nothing to worry. I just want to know why my husband is doing here. Do you know he was married?” and I reply “Yes, he told me you guys were getting a divorce”.  She laughs, and then tries to insult me. Bob interferes and tells her there’s no reason to try to hurt me. I haven’t done anything. She then tries to tell me then why I have I tried to come on to her husband and force kiss him and begged for him to sleep with me. I literally laugh and say “Em, NO, that’s definitely not true”. Not once have we slept together, nor have I ever tried. I only have offered him my friendship. In this back and forth discussion, she tells me things that I have only told Bob in privacy. She says things like that Bob would never be with me because I’m too something. I literally can’t remember her exact words. That’s how zero value I held on to her words but I knew that OH BOB, had been lying to both of us and playing us.

This geeky, nerdy, man who acted like he wanted to be my friend and was the best husband had been using me as pawn to make his wife jealous and want him again. I then found myself acting like a therapist between them arguing. When she couldn’t shut the fuck up and let him talk, I told them to get the fuck off my property.

AND I NEVER HEARD OR SAW BOB EVER AGAIN!!!!

THE END!

I definitely learned a lot with that friendship and situation. No matter how nice someone is, if you feel like they are judging you and using you, go with your gut and abort mission (friendship). Also don’t ever believe a man that tells you he’s separating or getting divorce unless you see proof!!

 

Posted by:Salty Melons

Artist, blogger, interested in researching how we identify sex appeal, how we date in the 21st century, contemporary art, dog rescuing, against slut shamming, and loving life!

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