There is a sort of strange feeling being alone.

I spent a few hours by myself in a shopping mall today and it was different. I have never done it. I have never been out by myself for more than half an hour. This time I went out for lunch alone and watched a movie alone. I thought that I had better practice for my future when I would in fact be doing a lot of things by myself.

It was odd, seeing people with other people and being by yourself. I did get the strange looks that were a mix of pity and of curiousity. Society puts a high premium on people being with other people that the idea that someone should go out by themselves, someone female especially, is a novel idea. But I did sit in a restaurant with Eoin Colfer as invisible company. I bought a movie ticket for one and received a double take from the Ticket-person who could not fathom the idea that a girl should go to a movie by herself. I sat between a family and a couple during the movie and I sniffed away the tears as the movie progressed. I had no one to share the random movie facts with. I had no one to whack on the arm at certain references that the show had popped up.

I have never been alone in a public area, apart from the library but in that case, it was a conventional loneliness instead of one that was out of place. I was left to my own devices, I was left in my own head. Did I enjoy it? No, perhaps not. I like the company of friends. Yet, there was something comforting about being able to wander about and not worry about another person’s wants and needs.

Being alone can be a double edged sword. You may enjoy some aspects of it but not be able to swallow the others.

Practice may make things better. I need to wander about by myself more often.


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