Both meals out were very nice, and each meal ended up being one other guest besides me. For dinner I met my host at shul after services. It is a bit weird trying to find someone you have no idea of what they look like! Lunch was supposed to have another person who never got in touch to confirm and was a no show. My lunch host actually said they have difficulties in getting guests through the same hospitality committee, and for guests to show up to the meal, so they were quite happy to have someone over that showed up and they'd like to have me back again. It had nothing to do with them, the couple and little kids were ideal hosts, the food was delicious and plentiful and their apartment was gorgeous.
It got me thinking with my own hosting experiences in this and other neighborhoods. Perhaps there's a segment of singles just like to 'reserve' a meal and if they get a better offer (meals with 20-30+ singles crammed into a tiny apartment tend to be the premium around here which upset me that with that many people, they couldn't accommodate one more) they dump their prior plans, in some cases not bothering to formally cancel. This so disappointing to the hosts who've planned a fancy meal, often bigger and better than what they would have done, and look forward meeing to someone new/new-ish. And of course by 'reserving' the guest spot, they prevent someone that was genuinely interested in hospitiality from coming since there's a limited number of people that will fit at a table. Too bad there isn't a way to separate out those folks looking for back-up plans with those that really appreciate the invite.
Let me tell you that the hosts that had me over this week, probably haven't had someone so thrilled by getting to be a guest, and I can say the infrequency certainly makes for it being especially memorable. Just re-charged my batteries so to speak, so I'm not dreading Friday nights like I was starting to. Now I'll feel happy for quite a while, even if the next bunch of shabbats are on my own, it was nice to have the shabbat experience of two meals in a row being a guest.