Samantha – After months of hibernation I have finally returned!! As explained in previous rants (see “I’m in a fk funk” for reference) I had totally dismissed the dating game that I was so heavily invested in just a couple months ago. I was exhausted of the game and putting in the effort, evidenced by the fact that I have had MINIMAL male interaction since I ran out on Mr. Views. Even when I did hook up I was totally unenthused, bored and not wanting to write another mundane blog post about it…yea not a great sign. However, I am happy to report that the funk has officially been broken and I have something worth sharing.
I went to Banff for a 5-day vacation over the May long weekend. I had planned this trip back in January when I was still living at home and badly needing an escape. I felt so claustrophobic in my parents’ house so I spontaneously booked a solo trip, which most of my friends found pretty odd. As a textbook extrovert and over-thinker, it seemed likely that I’d lose my damn mind if the only person I had to talk to was myself. Honestly, at the time I was feeling so stuck and frustrated in my parents’ house that the idea of doing something completely independent and outside my comfort zone seemed crucial to maintaining my sanity. Fast forward 4 months and I’ve since moved out, turned 23 and am much happier. I began to wonder: What would my trip be like? Would I meet cool people? Have some life-changing spiritual journey? Get mauled by a bear hiking alone in the woods? Nervous and excited, I hopped on a plane not knowing I was headed on an adventure that would greatly surpass my expectations.
I arrived in Banff Thursday afternoon filled with energy. It was too late in the day for a hike so I wandered around town taking in the sights and planning the next few days. I had come to Banff with a mission to get laid and was looking for an opportunity to increase my odds…so I decided to re-download tinder.
Turns out there are TONS of hot and horny guys in Banff and I quickly started chatting up a few. Monsieur Formidable (Mr. Wonderful) ended up asking me out first and I said yes. He’s 26, from Quebec, working in Banff and has a rockin bod…All qualities of the perfect vacation companion. We grabbed a couple beers at a bar and began chatting about who we were, where we worked and what drugs we’d done in the past – you know, normal first date stuff. We discovered we both like shrooms and decided to do some that night because WHY NOT?
We did them outside my hostel and spent most of the night having life chats. I was just thinking “Dayum this guy is great!” when he laid some really weird news on me: he’s an alchemist. I’m still not sure WTF that means but all I know is it’s a religion that focuses on getting to new levels, out of body experiences and attaining dream states…My poor, high brain could not take this seriously and I had to literally cover my face to keep from laughing. Anyway, I didn’t see him as anything more than a way to have some fun over the next few days, so I moved past it and we ended the night with a really hot hookup in the shower closet (yes, the shower in the hostel was literally a closet).
The next day he insisted on coming hiking with me, which was SO refreshing as guys from Toronto generally show affection by acting totally disinterested in the girl they’re seeing. We went on a long hike, took some cute pics by a waterfall (are we dating? Let me know), and really got to know each other. No religion stuff came up and I found myself thanking the Tinder Gods for providing me with someone nice, fun and pretty damn cute. After the hike we went to these hot springs where things literally heated up. Amongst all the other couples it felt like a pretty romantic setting for two people who’d just met, but I actually liked it. Usually that kind of stuff makes me feel cheesy and weird but the whole thing was really comfortable so I continued to go with the flow.
I’d anticipated going home after but Monsieur Formidable invited me over for some food instead . We stopped by a grocery store and got everything needed to make homemade burgers, salad and dessert. I mean, COME ON, was this guy for real? It was so cute and felt like something out of the kind of romance movies I usually make fun of. We spent most of that night in his bedroom and let me tell you this guy is without a doubt the best I’ve ever had. Like no contest. Anyway, I found out the next morning that he has to sign in his guests (he stays in some sort of staff accommodation) and had signed me in for the 3 nights I had left in Banff after our first night together. See what I mean about not being afraid to show interest?
The next day was pretty phenomenal. He had to work so I went on a solo expedition up Tunnel Mountain and even made it to Lake Louise. I got SO lucky with the weather while I was away, the forecast had called for rain the entire time but so far all I’d had was sun and clear skies. Heck, I even got a bit burnt on top of Tunnel Mountain. That night I went down to our hostel bar for some drinks. The bar was actually wrapping up around the same time Monsieur Formidable got off work so I headed over there for the night. We had an amazing night together, details can be assumed, and lazed around the next morning cuddling and chatting. ME. CUDDLING. I don’t think you realize the gravitas of this kind of situation. I don’t cuddle….usually. Oh dear, you can probably see where this is going can’t you?
He had work again the next day so I drove out to Marble Canyon in B.C. with this guy from my hostel. The canyon was absolutely breathtaking and I am still in awe just thinking about the view. After this I stopped by Canmore to visit a friend for dinner. By the time I got back to Banff that night I was exhausted and crashed for a couple hours knowing that I wouldn’t be getting much sleep staying over at Monsieur Formidable. At this point I had slept in my hostel only once and was regretting paying for all 4 nights up front…Later that night I went out with 2 Swedish girls from my hostel to this bar FILLED with Australians and other international travellers. It was a weird experience being one of the only Canadians in my own country but I was having an amazing time.
So how did this love affair end you might ask? Well, I’m a firm believer that things don’t truly end unless they end badly, so it makes sense that I’d find some way to screw up an almost perfect 5-day stretch. I can pinpoint the exact moment when things started to change for me. We’re lying in bed on the 4th morning, talking about our exes and he tells me that his relationships usually last up to two weeks before he gets annoyed or bored…he then proceeds to tell me that it would take a lot longer than that for me to annoy him if I was staying in Banff. Seems like a sweet but innocuous comment right? Well, maybe for a normal person. But for me, someone who RARELY gets emotionally invested it tugged at my heart a little. Here is someone that I have grown rather fond of and everything seemed simple until it was ending and I actually liked him! At the time I hadn’t realized this but that night, when I went out with Swedish girls, I ended up leaving the bar because he couldn’t get in. Uh oh, this wasn’t what my trip was supposed to be…Here I am having an amazing time on my last night in Banff and I leave to go hang out with a guy I barely know. This was probably a sign that I should probably check myself before I wreck myself but I didn’t see it.
We went back to his place, totally normal…except that it wasn’t. Now, as neither of us is a relationship person I can surmise that he might react similarly to me, but in reality this next part is an assumption of his behaviour based on how I explain my own. Generally when I am feeling vulnerable I have the tendency to push people away. You know, like push someone away, if they leave you were right all along but if they come back it means alot. It’s a pathetic defense mechanism, I know, and one that I’ve employed too many times. Well, while at his place some random guy messaged me on tinder and I checked it as a joke. Yea I know, dick move on my part. He immediately got weird and told me to talk to the random if I’d wanted even though I clearly did not. Then, while telling him about my night out with the girls, he made a comment about not being able to hook up with them because of me. I said “Why not? I’m leaving tomorrow, I don’t care” and he said something about how I wouldn’t be allowed to care either way. The point is, it seemed like we were both suddenly acting like we didn’t give a shit, and I doubt he would change from being an incredibly sweet, considerate person for 4 days into a fuckboi overnight. Maybe I’m naïve but I just don’t see it. Especially when I know that I was being bitchy in an arcane attempt to protect myself from getting hurt.
The rest of the night was filled with similar weirdness. We hooked up as per the usual but for the first time it wasn’t AMAZING. In fact, it was the first time I didn’t finish at all, let alone multiple times. I guess it really had gotten emotional for me. I felt pretty much responsible for the weirdness but couldn’t seem to stop from acting that way despite being painfully self-aware about it. I lay awake most of the night thinking about it how I messed up the ending of an almost a perfect week and being pissed off that I couldn’t have had a more mature emotional response. I continued to get increasingly upset until I decided “fuck it, I’m leaving”. I got up and dressed, and without much protest from him it became pretty clear he probably wanted me to leave as well. With a kiss goodbye I headed for the door, laughing when he called out “nice to meet you” from his bed. In that moment I realized how stupid I was for getting invested despite my best intentions. This guy was still pretty much a total stranger and I was friggen embarrassed.
I headed to the nearby Bow Falls as it was the one sight I had yet to visit and really needed to clear my head. After walking around for about 40 minutes I realized I FORGOT MY FUCKING WATCH. Oh God, now I had to go back and have another awkward goodbye. He met me at the front door with the watch and after a weird kiss on my neck and a quick hug, we bid adieu, this time for real. How badly I wish we could’ve ended more positively but such is life. I honestly think that I have such a hard time dealing with emotions because I don’t let myself experience them often enough. When I do it hits me like a ton of bricks and makes me act like a psycho.
All in all I am really thankful for the experience no matter the outcome. It was really nice having someone to be with, talk to and straight up, he was phenomenal in bed. Maybe I was dicknotized and drunk with hormones, but the whole thing showed me that I’m clearly interested in a relationship and should just hold out for something better than what I’ve settled for in the past. At the end of the day we never would’ve have worked out – the alchemy thing alone is enough to send me running – but for the 5 days I was there he was a wonderful host and perfect gentleman. My only hope is he looks back at our short whatever it was fondly instead of being clouded by the weirdness that hung over the ending.
Banff totally captured my heart in every way. I fell in love with the mountains, fell in lust with a French guy and would happily return if the opportunity arose once again. This trip was everything I needed and more, and truly proved that the West coast is the best coast!
Till next time, S ❤