I was in heaven
At first I thought I landed in heaven. Emigration allowed me to escape the impass I was stuck in for the last 6 months. You know how it is – the person closest to you leaves, and her last words are: "Adam, I keep hurting you, I’m not a good person. We need to break up." When my ex left, to: “not be a good person” for somebody else, I fell apart.
I found myself in a weird state, where I couldn’t force myself to do even the easiest tasks. There was also school. By then I could already think about it in the past form, because along with the amount of dirty dishes in my sink, the number of unfinished projects and unwritten exams also kept rising. I didn’t have a lot of money and making the ends meet became even harder when my Computer Science scholarship stopped appearing in my bank account. That wasn’t my proudest moment.
One day, when I was as usual aimlessly surfing the Internet, I came across some offers to go to the UK. I didn’t think twice, I knew I needed to change something. That’s how I made it to London but, how it quickly turned out, even though life here was in a much better standard, not everything felt right. It wasn’t even about the job – I spent a couple of months working as a Kitchen Porter, because nobody from the IT game wanted to hire a kid with a bachelor’s degree and no experience. I would work on my own projects at night, I had a couple of ideas. I decided to lay low for a couple of months, but I didn’t want to get out of practice.
The problem was something else. Loneliness. I never thought I would feel so bad about being lonely. And it wasn’t even because of being away from my homeland. Who am I, Mickiewicz? Now there is Skype, phones, e-mail – a lot of options. I even managed to watch some polish tv in my room, and back then that was quite an achievement. Besides, there was nothing to miss, the life “in the west” was different, better. An amazing world! So why didn’t I try to meet a girl? Why didn’t I strike up a conversation? Sure I did! At least as much as my busy schedule allowed me to. Work took a lot of my time (after a couple of months I became a waiter, then even the restaurant manager!), and all of the free moments I’ve spent in clubs – well, those are not particularly nice memories.
I’ve lost a fortune trying to hook up with beautiful girls, but the language they spoke in caused some troubles at first. I even managed to get numbers from some girls, I got stood up a couple of times, once I got beat up by a guy because I didn’t understand that the petite blonde at the bar was taken. By the bodyguard, no less. I was left with dating websites, but as most of my time was consumed by work, I could only use them via phone. None of them were suited for such usageand I didn’t really enjoy this agonizing pursuit, which reminded me of trying to catch a mosquito while wearing boxing gloves.
That’s how my attempts at finding a girlfriend kept stretching in time. Like, a lot. After a couple of years spent in the UK I finally got my first IT-related job. Because of that I had a little more money, but the most important thing was finally working in my own dream job. And I managed to find more time for working on my own project. You could even call it a dream.
A meeting with Irek
Not much time had passed and by a total accident I ran into Irek – a friend from high school.. As Irek said himself, he was never a fan of that pointless school nonsense that his parents were forcing him to endure. “You will be sweeping streets all your life!” - his angry mom would yell, looking at his report card, which, to put it lightly, wasn’t impressive.
The guy was no stranger to hard work though. His mom got heavily sick and he came here looking for a more profitable job. That was a couple of years ago, you could easily say that he saved his mom’s life, because thanks to his grind they were able to afford the costly therapy she underwent. Irek jokes that even though she would never say it, she’s glad that her son didn’t waste time in school.
I told Irek what I yearn for the most in the UK. After a moment of silence followed by doing a mad dog shot he admitted that he also feels lonely. He has a lot of responsibilities, because he managed to create his own company. He does loft conversions and doesn’t have much time to date. Also, here it’s not that easy – we are still just foreigners. Then I told him about my project.
I always wanted to create a social networking site and I was looking for the right topic.
The birth of the Polish Souls
The solution turned up by itself – here, in the UK. None of the dating sites were suitable for people who didn’t have much free time, who were living in a constant hurry – even though that is the exact character of the UK. You keep bumping into somebody, you get heartburn, because you didn’t waste more than 6 minutes and 23 seconds on a meal and you were also standing everytime you ate. Everybody is rushing, mothers with children are trotting off, even homeless people seem to be asking for a couple of quids quicker than anywhere else, making sure the dude doesn’t run away before forking over some dough.
But still, nobody thought about creating a dating site for that kind of people. A site which would be accessible on every device, because they would usually use it on their phones. A site, where instead of pretentious artwork which makes it emberrassing to use in public transport (because everybody that looks over their shoulder would wonder why that 30year old is staring at ponies), there would be amazing graphics and, most of all, pictures of people they would actually want to date (not some miniatures straight from Mario Bros on Nintendo).
Irek thought about it for a minute and then he said he is into it. I was totally shocked. I didn’t even propose anything to him and he himself decided to invest in my idea. We drank for a long time that evening and we discussed the details, but the project ran into the buffers for a couple of months anyway.
We didn’t have a graphic designer. A couple of months later it turned out that the waiting was worth it. Róża, also a friend from high school, came by my firm. She led quite a colorful life, living in a squat and experimenting with graphics, with a sort of a Witkacy vibe. But truthfully she is quite a talented graphic designer who would, as she couldn’t support herself by her ambitious, but inviable street art, from time to time, offer her services to digital agencies. She would help with designing websites, etc. I told her about out project and she accepted the offer on the spot, with a smile on her face.
The missing element
There is one more person I forgot to introduce. Borys – that guy is a legend. He has a master’s degree in cultural studies. He spent years taking part in Erasmus Programme, international exchanges and trips abroad. The guy has that special something. He also has a superhuman ability to accumulate money (nobody knows how he does that) and he is as bold as brass.
He was the last link in the chain that powers our site. He paid down the missing money and, as he didn’t have a steady job, he managed to take care of all of the paperwork in offices.
Adam, Irek, Rose and Borys – we just created an opportunity for you to easily find a soul mate. Now it’s your turn. Good luck!