Returning home I opened up the online dating site once again.

I was back in the saddle again. Searching for my next ride into unchartered terrain.

The next profile read: “I would rather be happy than right.”

I am successful, sincere, reliable, and caring. I work hard and I play hard. I am looking for adult conversation that could build into a relationship. 64 years old, widowed with four kids, professional bridge player. Hey perhaps you could come to visit me, I have the boat, the home, the entertainment. I don’t want to invest the time on dialogue on this site so let’s just meet and begin there.

Bridge player? What kind of profession is that? I hated bridge. My sisters and brothers play.Duplicate and master bridge players. The hours spent sitting around a card table arguing over playing the wrong cards or tricks or whatever … was not my idea of fun.

I was thinking this was not the guy for me… I would rather play Ring Around The Rosy then London Bridges Falling Down. But I did respond politely:

“I know nothing about this card game… I prefer more active endeavors.”

His response was quick: “I play for fun on an online site much like the dating sites. I could teach you, set up a username. Mine is WALUM it stands for ” Will always love you more” in reference to my wife who passed. Let’s call you “Jolie” meaning pretty. I know that you are pretty my sweet one.”

After chatting on line I felt his pain. Loss of a wife, caring for 4 children, single parent, working hard to support them. He had me by my heartstrings… I would learn the game of Bridge.

We began a flirtatious dialogue through my lessons online, but as we got to know each other only through the game site, his seductive overtones were becoming more and more blatant.

As I learned more about this site I would play with others, join tables, particularly women. I noticed how often Walum played with other women and when… there was a pattern. I followed his pattern.

Chatting through the site while playing was interesting. Meeting people from around the globe. Then that One message came in from a username unfamiliar to me

It said: “Sweet thing be careful. AIDS. His wife is not dead”

What did all this mean?

Follow tomorrow for the rest of this story…

Ann Reichardt

repost ….. thank you