I am a very sociable person who is fascinated by people- but who loves silence and time alone. I am aware that this may sound contradictory.
I like the idea of mute salons, where you can go for haircuts, nail appointments and the like and they promise not to engage you in conversation if you make an appropriate signal.
My dream salon seems to be very far from becoming a reality... So if I'm feeling quiet I take a book. I found myself in the local place early on a Sunday morning, last year in fact- and the genuinely lovely lady I was seeing asked me the stock 'what did you do this week' question?
Inside I sighed a little but she really was engaging- so I put down my thriller and started telling her in detail about who I had seen, where I had been, what I'd been doing.
I chatted away and after a while my new friend stopped working, looked at me and smiled. I looked back, wondering why this interlude. She said 'you light up when you talk about this man, it is lovely to see'.
I tried to shrug it off as my general enthusiasm about the event we'd been to, but I think she saw through me.
She is right of course, in that way strangers can be.
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