She was well spoken, in her early thirties, attractive and not pushy. Part of my brain began turning: while I hardly expected to get together with her, she would have friends like herself; people exist within tribes of similar people. At our first meeting, we discussed everything you might expect: my background, the kind of person I was hoping to meet, plus the agency fees and the contract. Then, a house call. My matchmaker informed me that, to get to know me, she needed to visit my home.
Exactly how all this fed into the matchmaking process, I never would come to know, aside from it perhaps confirming that I was good for the fees. Likes horses maybe. She enjoys walking, family, socialising. I set an age range, attached photos of women I fancied and hit Send. Less straightforward was my attempt to get that profile memorialised in the contract somehow.
Yet my matchmaker was very good at not using aggressive sales tactics. Take your time; look at other options, she advised, while emailing me teaser profiles: a pretty singer here, a striking PR lady there …. In any other realm finding a home, hiring a key staff member I would never entertain paying all of the fees up front, with no part contingent on the basic delivery of the service let alone a successful outcome. However, matchmaking is different.
It deals in affairs of the heart. A contrarian, non-commercial streak in me embraced the romanticism of it all. Certainly I was persuaded that it would be odd, and probably indeed impossible, to pay a financial bounty upon meeting a romantic partner. Moving in together, marriage? None of this adequately explains why per cent of the fees needed to be paid up front. This was never convincingly answered, perhaps because my agency never needed to. It would be unfair to call introduction services confidence tricks, but my role in the arrangement increasingly came to feel like that of the mark.
There would be no close matches — not even a short-term relationship, let alone anything serious or marriage. One of the very first matches was the most promising: a woman working in PR, very much my type, who for six weeks demurred whenever I tried to meet.
But a month later, her calendar miraculously opened up. Within six months, my matchmaker had gone on maternity leave and was replaced by two other staff members. Before long, I asked for a partial refund and you can guess how that went. One curiosity throughout these match-made dates was that I, the man, invariably felt an obligation to foot all bar and restaurant bills.
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Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Tuesday said his government has filed a contempt petition in the Supreme Court against Karnataka for allegedly diverting the Mahadayi [Mandovi] river water despite the matter being sub-judice. The two states are locked in a dispute over sharing of the river's water, considered as the lifeline of Goa.
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Aiming at ensuring that Goans working abroad do not face hardship, NRI commissioner Narendra Sawaikar on Sunday said the commission has been closely monitoring the COVID situation in Europe and other parts of the world, as countries have begun lifting restrictions. Commenting on the Hathras gang rape incident, a Bhartiya Janata Party MLA has said that rapes can be stopped if parents teach their daughters to behave decently. Surendra Singh, who is an MLA from Ballia constituency in Uttar Pradesh, said, [Such incidents can only be stopped by good values, and not by governance or sword.
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A year-old girl was allegedly gang-raped in Hathras last month and left to die. The case has led to widespread outrage across the nation with the opposition holding the BJP-led state government accountable for the rising crimes against women. Hathras case: Are Indian state police trying to discount a woman's story of rape?