But as time passed, we grew to want different lives.
He wanted roots: a finance career in Europe, kids who ski and dive.
He included a lot of cheerful words about my personality—Philip and I started dating when we were college sophomores.
A few days after posting that online profile, I got on the back of Philip's scooter, and he drove me to my first date in 12 years. Eventually, I thought, someone would knock on my door and say, "Hi. I brought pad thai and a backpack full of obscure Middle East fiction.I talked about girls' school in post-revolutionary Iran and frying up noodles on a rice farm in Thailand.Philip put my face in both his hands and said, "Do you want me to take you in and deposit you at the table and shake his hand? Mauricio seemed to be a self-entertainer: He told me about graphic design in Amsterdam and the best bars in Sicily. When he sensed that I was nervous, he ordered me a glass of white wine. I hadn't felt the sting of rejection in 12 years, and I decided that if dating was a game, then I was only in it for the ego boost of a sure win.Whether or not I liked the guy, I needed him to find me impressive. On our date, my first instinct was to tell him stories.ABOUT A YEAR AND A HALF AGO, in our sunny canal-side apartment in Amsterdam, my ex-husband, Philip, and I shared a plate of Dutch cookies as he wrote an Internet dating profile for me.
"This is just for practice," he said, attaching a blurry photo of me wearing sunglasses.