Being a bit of a "late-bloomer", I got started a bit late on the dating scene. What I have learned is that while I'm not afraid to be alone and will certainly not settle, life is much more meaningful when you have someone special to share it with. I'm looking forward to finding that woman and spending the rest of my life with her. I think that you need to take time to date and be patient - that's the only way you can really learn about each other.Ideal - hmm, well since I've never encountered the "ideal" match - I'll say this. Traits that I look for include intelligence (intelligence does not necessarily equal level of formal education), mutual physical attraction, kindness, compassion, willingness to compromise, independence (without fear of sharing in a relationship),and most importantly, being able to have good communication. On the more practical side, I would like it if she laughed at my jokes (even - well, especially those that she thinks are NOT funny). Unfortunately, in spite of my occupation, my allergies to cats have become fairly severe. So, it would be better if she didn't have one.