The Voyeur Tinder

Date of initial meeting: July 2014

In July of last year, I was fresh out of a long term relationship and had a holiday to Japan booked. I was using Tinder in Sydney already, and thought it might be interesting to try Tinder in Japan and see where foreign Tinder dates could take me.

I flew to Tokyo two days ahead of my friends in July 2014. This was my first time being alone in a foreign country and I was lonely and bored. During these two days, I Tindered furiously trying to find someone to meet up with so I didn’t have to eat dinner alone. I was having a little bit of trouble, as men on Tinder in Japan didn’t take the initiative to speak first, so I ended up messaging a few first.

Voyeur Tinder was one of these men. Our initial conversation took place on my first night in Tokyo, a Thursday, and we made plans to meet up the next night. We messaged each other back and forth on Friday afternoon, and planned to meet up in Roppongi around 7pm that night. Before meeting Voyeur Tinder, I had little expectations about where it would lead, and was purely meeting him out of my own boredom. He looked semi-cute in his pictures, but wasn’t someone I would call conventionally good looking.

I was sitting in a bar called London Jazz Bar, right next to Roppongi subway station waiting for him, when I felt someone tap me on the shoulder and say “Hi, I’m -” He was wearing a tight t-shirt that showed off his muscular arms and chest, and he had a strong Northern American accent which I liked. I was strongly attracted to him right from the minute I laid eyes on him, and I was shocked by it. They say that a woman decides within 3 seconds if she will sleep with a man. This was the first time I could attest to it.

Voyeur Tinder worked in Finance, at a major international investment bank (yes, what TinderellaNYC says is true, all the guys on Tinder are in Finance- even in Japan). He had grown up in Toronto, and had previously lived in London and New York before moving to Tokyo. As well as being cute, successful and intelligent, he was also adventurous. He thrilled me. We had one round of drinks at London Jazz Bar, before we went to a craft beer bar nearby. Voyeur Tinder and I had a few mutual interests, such as Game of Thrones, and we spent much of the night talking about this, as well as interesting things in Japan, and our previous travels.

I don’t know if it was true, but Voyeur Tinder said that I was the first person he had met from Tinder. While waiting to have dinner at a yakitori restaurant nearby, we had another drink at a cocktail bar, and then had sake during dinner at the restaurant.

After dinner, he walked me to Roppongi station and I caught the subway back to my place. We made plans to meet up the next night. I was a bit tipsy when I got back to my AirBNB and was swooning on the inside.

On Saturday night, my friends were tired from their flight so they decided to go back to the hotel and sleep. Voyeur Tinder was with his friends at Geronimo’s, a shot bar in Roppongi, and I was keen for a night out, so I decided to go there by myself. Voyeur Tinder was with one friend, who worked for Google as a software engineer. Voyeur Tinder’s friend was American, and super friendly. I spent lots of time during the evening also talking to him. After we had a few shots at Geronimo’s, we proceeded to Legends Sports Bar nearby and met another two of Voyeur Tinder’s friends. One was American and one was British, and they were both brokers at another major financial company. Voyeur Tinder’s British friend pounced, and I spent most of my time at Legends chatting to him. After Voyeur Tinder’s British friend found out Voyeur Tinder and I met on Tinder, he became very interested and we started chatting about that. Shortly after that, I began talking to the software engineer again. Voyeur Tinder’s two broker friends and him were in a conversation though, and they were both clearly intoxicated (probably due to the bar tab they had). At one point, I clearly heard “How’s your baby?” being said to Voyeur Tinder by the American broker, while the British broker chimed in “I think she’s keen on you.” They were so loud that I could hear them, even while standing far away. At this point I looked over, and Voyeur Tinder and I made eye contact, but I didn’t hear him make a reply to his drunk friends.

At some point, the American broker suggested that we all go to Feria- naturally I agreed, and off we all went. With your Feria entrance fee, women get two drink vouchers, while men get one, so Voyeur Tinder and I continued drinking there. In conjunction with the two shots I had had at Geronimo’s, and the two Bloody Mary’s I had had at Legends, I became very drunk all of a sudden.

The whole night was a blur after this, but I do remember that Voyeur Tinder and I went to explore Feria by ourselves and during this time, I kissed him. After this, Voyeur Tinder smiled and said “Let’s go back to my place”.

I was attracted to him, and too drunk to protest, so we walked outside holding hands and hailed a cab, but I felt shocked at the inappropriateness of it. I asked him “Is this what you do with all the girls you meet on Tinder?” and he charmingly replied “No, I told you, I’ve only met you from Tinder, remember?”

Looking back now, it all seems very dubious.

Voyeur Tinder had a beautiful split-level apartment with a bathroom that was pretty much a glass box, albeit with blinds drawn down. I recalled seeing the picture after going through his Facebook pictures, but thought it had been a joke. Due to my intoxicated state, I was forced to use this, and was appalled at having to do so. As soon as we got into his apartment, I ran to the bathroom and started vomiting. VT followed me, patting my head and asking if I was ok. I drunkenly told him to get out and continued vomiting.

Shortly after that, we went to the living room first and started making out on the sofa. In between makeout sessions I would run to the bathroom and vomit. Every time I came back, VT would say “please don’t puke on my sofa”. This changed into “please don’t puke on my bed”, after we had moved into the bedroom.

That night, in between kisses, Voyeur Tinder said: “When I first saw you, I thought you were so-” he never finished the sentence and it still haunts me to this day trying to figure out what that last word could have been. I was so drunk that I figured I wouldn’t make it home alive, so I asked VT if I could stay the night. He said “yeah, of course you can stay over.” With that, he gave me two painkillers for me, and I passed out.

I was woken the next day by the natural light streaming in from his skylight. I had a pounding headache and realized I had passed out with last night’s make up and clothes still on. As expected, I got the shock of my life waking up in a strange environment, with a naked person next to me.

After waking up, we chatted for a little bit. I said to Voyeur Tinder;

“I’m disgusted that I had to use your perverted bathroom last night. It’s kind of voyeuristic”.

“No one’s ever said that to me before. I guess it is kind of perverted, but I didn’t choose this place for the bathroom,” he replied.

He was very affectionate the next day, and kept continually saying; “I’m so glad last night happened.” He would kiss random parts of my body out of nowhere, and I asked him “Are you naturally affectionate?” VT replied that he wasn’t, and we then got into a discussion about how people are usually awkward after one night stands, but I felt like it was perfectly natural lying there with him, and I thought he felt the same.

We talked about various things, although I don’t clearly remember what, but one thing really stood out. We got on the topic of relationships. I said I had just gotten out of a long term relationship a few weeks before, and he sympathised. I asked him if he had ever been in a long term relationship before, and his response was that he had never wanted to be in one. This should have rang the alarm bells for me. Shortly after that, I got my things and got a cab back to my hotel. Later that night, I got a Facebook message from VT saying Last night was fun. Hope you are feeling better.  I loved that he had messaged me, because I knew then that I would see him again.

We met up again on Tuesday the following week. I met Voyeur Tinder at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Roppongi Hills and had a quick dinner at a kaiten-zushi before going back to his place. Voyeur Tinder picked up the bill that night, as he always did. On the previous Saturday night, I had lost one side of my favourite pair of earrings, and the pretext for going back to Voyeur Tinder’s place was to ‘search for my missing earring’.

When we came back to his place that Tuesday night though, he seemed a little bit jittery and uncomfortable. I looked around for my earring everywhere but couldn’t seem to find it, until Voyeur Tinder pushed back the sofa and found it underneath. He then suggested watching a movie, and we sat awkwardly on the sofa not touching each other until I moved over closer to him.

That night I made an awkward realisation: Voyeur Tinder had erection problems. He had no problem getting it up, but it was difficult to maintain, and even in my drunken state on Saturday evening, I recalled what a hard time we had trying to do it. After a few failed attempts, he turned to me with an expression that made me feel sorry for him, and said “Worth the trip?”

After a semi-success, we lay in bed and I gave him a massage and we chatted about stuff. We lay there naked, intertwined staring into each other’s eyes and just talked.  Before going to bed, we snuggled a bit and fell asleep holding hands, although neither of us had a good sleep that night.

The next day we had sex in the morning before leaving his place, and he walked me to the station. I was going to Osaka the next day but we said we would meet up again before I left Japan. However, I remember that day when we said goodbye, it had a finality to it, and I felt a little bit sad.

I left for Osaka the next day and couldn’t stop thinking about him in the days that followed. Even though I’d only seen him a few times and barely knew him, I was already crazy about him. I messaged him the day I left for Osaka (Thursday) asking a mundane question about whether he’d tried Tokyo Banana before, and we messaged each other back and forth a few times but it was brief and nonchalant.

I didn’t hear from him again until Sunday, when he messaged me asking which day I come back to Tokyo. I told him that I would be back on Thursday, and would be leaving on Saturday morning to go back to Sydney. He said the only day we would be able to meet up was Thursday night, as he was leaving to go overseas on Friday morning. We made plans for a rendez-vous on Thursday night, and then Monday I happened to get my period.

I messaged him on Monday saying I wouldn’t come over Thursday because I had my period, and I don’t remember what his immediate response to that was, although a few messages later, he said I could go for a back massage *kissy face* seemingly implying that I should come over anyway.

However, Thursday came and we didn’t see each other. Voyeur Tinder messaged me that day saying that he might possibly have to stay back at work. I hated myself for showing that I cared, but I messaged him saying wish I could see you. His reply was brief: Same though work is a disaster this week. I decided to give up on Voyeur Tinder at that point and got completely plastered at Feria that night with my friend and Groper Tinder.

I came back to Sydney at the end of July, depressed about being home and heartbroken. Every day I thought about going back to Japan and seeing Voyeur Tinder again.

A month passed. I was Tindering up a storm, just trying to meet someone that would make me forget about Voyeur Tinder. I thought about him every day, just wishing that he would message me and say something- anything. I stalked his Facebook and Instagram, seeing where he’d been, who he was with, what he was doing- I was crazy obsessed and I knew it. One day, while stalking his Instagram and looking at who he was following, I realised that I was no longer on his following list. Infuriated, I decided to forget about Voyeur Tinder and Tindered furiously.

I did not forget about Voyeur Tinder.

Late August: I was out glumly eating dessert with friends on a Friday night and thinking about Voyeur Tinder as usual, when a message popped up on my phone.

It was Voyeur Tinder. His tone was casual: Hey how’s life back down under? I replied saying that it was fine, though I missed Japan, and asked how he was doing. He replied: Been busy working and traveling. You ever coming back? I said: I really want to come back ASAP but I think earliest I can come is Dec. His response: Nice! I may actually be in Australia then. I was obviously elated to hear this, but tried not to sound overeager. Oh really, we should meet up *smiley face* I replied. Voyeur Tinder: Yah some of my friends are thinking about going, and if they do I would tag along. Definitely meet up *smiley face*. Me: Sounds good, let me know your plans once they are set in stone. Voyeur Tinder: Will do you do the same. My messages may have sounded nonchalant, but inside I was squealing like a little girl.

A few days later, I booked a Sydney to Tokyo flight leaving late June 2015. I messaged him straight away saying: Still far off but just booked a ticket to Tokyo for late June next year. We were messaging each other through Whatsapp, so I could see that he saw it the same day. I waited that whole day and still did not get a reply. I waited the whole week and still did not get a reply. After two weeks, I decided to give up on Voyeur Tinder. Again, I continued Tindering furiously, just trying to meet somebody that would make me forget about Voyeur Tinder.

Again, I didn’t forget about Voyeur Tinder.

Another month passed. One day in late September, I was stalking his Tinder profile, when I saw that his location had changed to 150 KM AWAY. I was furious on the inside but the only thing I could really do to console myself was think to myself repeatedly that I was going to forget about Voyeur Tinder. That night, as my luck would have it, I had a dream about Voyeur Tinder. In it, we were happy, but the dreams in which you are happiest leave you waking up feeling dismal. As soon as I woke up I felt like that, but also thought how funny it would be if Voyeur Tinder had messaged me. Lo and behold, when I checked my phone, there was a message from Voyeur Tinder. In addition to that, he had re-followed me on Instagram just that day, and his location went back to being the usual 7000 something kms away- I figured it was an error, as it went back to that distance in a short amount of time.

He said: Sorry late reply but June so far! I’m sure I’ll be in Sydney before that.

I replied to that saying: When do you think? I’ll be heading to Thailand for Christmas and New Year’s. Of course, I didn’t get a reply straight away, although I could see that he viewed it a few hours later. I wasn’t expecting one straight away, but needless to say, I was expecting one. And it didn’t come.

After I’d waited about a month getting my hopes up about seeing Voyeur Tinder, I decided to forget about him once again. I continued meeting guys from Tinder, hoping that each one I met would be the one that would make me forget about Voyeur Tinder, but none of them ever did. I went through the motions of going to work and classes, filling my time with friends and continuing to meet men. I would actively search for Asian Americans or Asian Canadians and get excited if I came across one, thinking that this would finally be the guy to make me forget VT. They never were. Inside, I was still looking for him in every man I met, thinking that if I couldn’t have him, I wanted someone just like him. I felt crazy at times because I was crazy obsessed with a guy I had only seen a few times. It was nonsensical, and I couldn’t explain my feelings towards him.

November 2014: I continued to stalk Voyeur Tinder on his social media platforms- Facebook, Instagram and Tinder (to see his location). For an entire week in November, his location was 27 kms away. One day, when I went to the city, it said 1km away. However, I reasoned with myself that if he was in Australia, he would have messaged me, or at least posted a picture to Instagram or Facebook, like he usually did every time he traveled.

I was completely wrong. After another ritualistic stalking session, I found out that Voyeur Tinder was indeed in Sydney that week. I saw a picture he posted on Facebook, but not until after he had left. Of course, when I saw this, I repeated my ritualistic “I’m going to forget about Voyeur Tinder” affirmation, and for a little while, I almost did.

Never completely though. I had other flirtations during this time and other crushes, but Voyeur Tinder was always there in the back of my mind. I would walk around Sydney with my head in a cloud, wondering how he could have come here and not contacted me. Obviously I didn’t mean anything to him. I only wished that if he wasn’t going to meet me when he came to Sydney, that he wouldn’t have messaged me saying he would. I would’ve been sad if I never got to see him again, but I would’ve known what it was and tried my best to get over him, instead of sitting around, waiting for him. I tried so hard to forget, but I never did.

I still had my two tickets to Japan booked for February and July 2015, so in the back of my mind, there was still a glimmer of hope that I might see him somewhere, and we might rekindle our romance.

I did see him again, in the most unexpected of places.

January 2015: I was on a short vacation to Thailand for New Year’s Eve with my girlfriends. I still hadn’t completely forgotten about Voyeur Tinder at this point, and was doing a check of his Tinder location when I saw that it was 10kms away- this was while I was in Phuket. I didn’t think much of it until I saw a picture he posted on Instagram of a nightclub in Phuket. I felt a little bit uneasy knowing that he was so close, and thinking that we wouldn’t see each other.

Despite Phuket being such a big place, I managed to run into him. Seriously, my luck. I was standing on the dance floor at Seduction, a popular nightclub on Bangla Road in Phuket, when I saw someone look at me and do a double take. We both did a double take. I couldn’t believe my eyes in my drunken state, but I knew who it was. I saw him start walking over, so I met him halfway and we gave each other a friendly kiss hello. I don’t remember our exact conversation, but I remember him saying something about: There’s a lot of meatheads here. When did you get here? When is your flight tomorrow? Where are you staying? Are you coming back to Japan?

I had come to a slow realisation that Voyeur Tinder never listened to what I said, or had a very bad memory. Back when we were messaging a few months earlier, I had told him that I would definitely be back in Japan.

He didn’t suggest anything but from what I could tell by the questions, it kind of sounded as if he wanted to hook up. Being him though, he would never have made the first move. We chatted very briefly and he then said that he would come say goodbye before leaving. I returned to my friends feeling shell-shocked that I had the worst luck to see him and felt like I was spiraling into my obsession for him again.

I saw him again later in the night, again from across the room. It looked as if he was looking at me out of the corner of his eye but pretending not to look and I pretended not to see.

He did not say goodbye before leaving. It was late, around 2 or 3am when I got a message from him, and I was still drinking on Bangla Road.

Voyeur Tinder: Hey sorry we took off early our friend wasn’t feeling well. What time do you fly out tmr

This was the second time that he had asked what time I was flying out. We messaged each other back and forth for a little while, and I was still interested in him so I asked him to come back out, but he said he was staying in for the night and was nearby in Karon Beach. I didn’t take the bait.

February 2015: I came back to Japan. After seeing Voyeur Tinder in Thailand in January, I spiraled back into my obsession with him but was torn about whether I should meet him or not. After much deliberation, I decided to message him and said I was back in Japan and asked if he wanted to hang. Voyeur Tinder messaged back promptly asking when I was in town, and I said I was in Tokyo every weekend.

I did not get a reply.

After some confusion as to why he hadn’t replied, I decided that it would be best to forget Voyeur Tinder once and for all. (And yet again, I still could not forget about him- this has led me to the conclusion that I must be mentally ill).

That Friday night, I had my second date with Patrick Bateman Tinder (more on him later). Patrick Bateman Tinder and I were walking around Roppongi looking for a bar when a big group of boys walked past. Naturally, I was checking them out, but then noticed a familiar face among them- who should it be, but Voyeur Tinder. Just my (bad) luck, again. I turned away hurriedly and pretended I didn’t see him, feeling my stomach lurch while Patrick Bateman Tinder was chattering on in the background, oblivious.

In addition to that, Patrick Bateman Tinder and I were walking past Feria, where I suppose Voyeur Tinder and his friends were going. Another familiar face passed me by- Groper Tinder, who I also pretended not to see.

I decided from then on, that I had to avoid Roppongi at all costs.

I never saw Voyeur Tinder again, but I never forgot about him. This was the one period in my life where I actually felt like I had gone nuts, because I was crazy about a guy that I had only seen a few times.

I had a few dreams about Voyeur Tinder in April. Every time I dreamt about him, I would fall back into the routine of thinking about him, going over in my head the possible reasons why it didn’t work out. It was hard for me to come to terms with the fact that I didn’t get what I wanted this time. Leading up to my trip to Japan in July 2015, I was worried and a bit nervous that I would bump into him in Japan again. At this point, Voyeur Tinder and I weren’t friends on Facebook anymore (yes, he deleted me. The nerve) so I’m embarrassed to say that I was stalking him on Instagram and Tinder.

While I was in Japan in July, I found out that VT had moved back to New York. It was probably the combination of this and a hangover that made me feel sick, and I tossed and turned in bed worrying about I don’t know what. At that point, I began to question whether it was my love for Japan that kept me coming back or him. In the days that followed, I walked around Tokyo with a slight melancholy feeling. Nothing felt magical anymore, because I knew then that there were no more opportunities for bumping into Voyeur Tinder around every corner. I felt like a silly child who had got her expectations up and fallen for someone who clearly had no interest in a relationship with me, and wondered how I had let things get this far. I was so fixated on getting him, that I couldn’t read into what he was really saying to me, with the delayed texts, and no replies: he just wasn’t that into me.

One thought on “The Voyeur Tinder

  1. Thanks for sharing your experiences. I just started tinder a couple of weeks ago here in japan and got obsessed with a guy, who acts pretty much the same way. It’s nice to know that it’s a common behavior between japanese guys and now i can stop thinking that he actually cares and move on.

    Like

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