Sober and cold
After several months of email exchange, Klaus came to Japan on business and wished to meet with me. I was excited and booked a table at a restaurant, which ornate, theme park-like interior Quentin Tarantino was inspired to emulate for the set in Kill Bill.
The dinner was lovely, and we had a great time. After the meal, Klaus invited me to the hotel bar. He stayed in a hotel in central Akasaka that overlooks the city, with Tokyo Tower standing in the middle of the view. I ordered a glass of champagne, and Klaus had the Japanese whiskey. As always the case with good quality champagne, it got into my brain and made me ecstatic. Klaus was fun and attentive like Noah, whose company I often missed. As the champagne was clearing from the glass, the space between us closed, and I closed my eyes at the same moment Klaus asked me if he could kiss me.
The kiss was the climax of the fun night out for me, and by the time we separated our lips, I was ready to go home. But Klaus was still in rapture and asked me if I wanted to come to his hotel room. I told him it was too late and I had to catch a train. He then asked me if I could join dinner with the team the following night. I said I’d see and left.
When I woke up sober in the morning, a modicum of interest I had in Klaus had been lost. There was instead a feeling of disgust. My escapism created a fantasy with a European colleague who was one animal year cycle older than myself and to whom I was attracted only enough for one date with a kiss. I admonished myself for leading him on and decided to cut the contact with him. When he texted me about dinner, I replied I was busy. He asked me if I was ok, but I remained silent for the rest of his stay. I didn’t respond to his emails again, and he soon stopped trying.