*Swati, 23, is an intern in a media house in Delhi. She shares her strange love story with us.
Swipe left and right
I was in college when I first heard about Tinder. After downloading the app on my phone, I started exploring it. Swiping left meant you don’t like that profile while swiping right meant, you are interested.
After swiping left on many profiles, I swiped right on Arav. He was young, tall and handsome. His profile said he was ‘23, fun-loving, college-going guy who loves bikes and movies’ and lives in Dehradun.
After initial introductions, we started chatting and continued till late at night. He was a big Bollywood fan like me and said he read the books of all my favourite authors, including Chetan Bhagat! What’s more – when I told him I like One Direction, he said it was his favourite boy band too.
Best for the last?
After talking continuously for a week, we exchanged numbers and started talking late night on WhatsApp. He even asked me to share pictures and I would happily do so but when I asked him for his picture, he would share the same picture from Tinder profile in different ways and said ‘let’s keep the best thing for the last’ hinting that we should meet soon.
Barely one month after we virtually met, I almost felt I was in love with him. I was desperate to meet him! I was excited I now have a love story to tell my friends! So was he.
As luck would have favoured us, he said he was coming to Delhi for the weekend and wanted us to meet at a hotel. I felt a bit uncomfortable and asked him to meet outside.
‘Don’t you trust me’
I did not want to annoy him when he said, 'Don’t you trust me'. So I agreed to meet him at the hotel lobby.
I called my best friend Shreya and told her everything. She asked me to text him to meet him outside. I hesitated and even told Shreya that she was overthinking. I did not want to ruin this moment.
Shreya forcefully took my phone and texted Arav to meet outside. I got really annoyed with Shreya for doing this. Arav didn’t reply for a long time. Two hours passed. I got really anxious.
Finally, he texted saying he is a bit disturbed that I don’t trust him but he eventually agreed to meet outside first.
I looked at my friend and said, ‘Dekha!’
Shreya said she would drop me there and be around. I even laughed at her for being so protective.
Was this a joke?
The next day, I wore my favorite orange top and blue denims and went to Dilli Haat – the place where we had decided to meet. Shreya dropped me there and said she would be in a cafe nearby to pick me up later.
As I waited near the Punjab stall, I opened my phone to see his photo. With butterflies in my tummy, I was looking forward to meeting Arav in real life.
I was engrossed in my thoughts when someone tapped my shoulder. As I turned, I saw a middle-aged, short man. He must be in his late forties.
He smiled, waved to me and said, ‘Hey, I am Arav.'
I was confused. Was this a joke? I did not know how to react.
‘I can explain’
He was definitely not the person that I had been talking to all this while. After gathering my composure, I said, ‘I am sorry, I don’t know you’ and started walking really fast.
He came after me and kept saying, ‘I can explain everything’ but I ran as fast as I could and went to the washroom. I was nervous and shocked!
I messaged Shreya. When she came I hugged her. Meanwhile, Arav kept messaging ‘I can explain’ and kept calling.
Shreya took the phone from me and warned him to stop calling else she would call the police. That was it! His calls stopped.
Shreya then blocked his number immediately. I knew it was the end of my love story, before it even began. We stayed in the washroom for some time until I felt normal again. When we came out, Arav was nowhere to be seen.
To protect the identity, the person in the picture is a model and names have been changed.
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