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20-Oct-2017 16:32

Now imagine that feeling multiplied times a tsunami and you’ll know what washed over me when called up to see if I would travel around the country going on dates to find out if location really matters when you’re looking for love.

And the bassist who insisted I listen to 10 minutes of his music while he watched me react to it.

Then I practically fell asleep at the wheel coming home.

The next night, we had another terrific date wandering around New Bern and going on a ghost tour (half the town is haunted, apparently).

Had I not set a gigantic Tinder radius, I never would’ve met Jason, a smoking-hot 32-year-old who’d just moved to the area from England for work and had played semi-pro soccer back home.

He immediately struck me as sweet and affectionate — one of the only guys I’ve ever met online who wanted to talk on the phone first to make sure I wasn’t a bot and that we’d enjoy spending an evening together.

And the winner who showed up in sweatpants and couldn’t buy me a drink because he’d spent his last on a beer and wings special for himself. And there’ve been wonderful guys in the mix too, most of whom fizzled out because in this city, it’s just really hard to fit two people, and their ambitions, into one relationship. ”) Maybe a change of location — to New Bern, North Carolina; Miami, Florida; Austin, Texas; Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Detroit, Michigan; and Los Angeles, California — was the answer.

I didn't want to come off like I was on a sex-cation — cruising Tinder for a vacation hookup — or attract attention-seekers who’d get off on the idea that I might write about them.

Becky told me about a Marine she stopped dating after he told her he was “using a penis pump to get bigger for girls.” Now she sees him out and about all the time. “Unfortunately, New Bern does have that reputation,” says Natasha, a bartender, 29, “that most chicks in this town are trying to get pregnant to trap a guy.” Almost no one I met dates online, which makes sense: If you live in a small town, chances are you like a tight community where everyone knows your name, rather than internet strangers.

From what I could glean, the local servers, bartenders, and chefs in town just sleep with one another.

Still, I both got annoyed waiting for him to come to me, and felt guilty over his two-hour commute.

Jason seemed eager for a committed relationship, but I ultimately didn’t see it going anywhere.

So for now she’s in a friends-with-benefits thing with a New Bern bouncer.