Several years ago, I went backpacking in Europe with some friends. Toward the end of our trip, we all split up to check out different cities and countries.
Six weeks on your own gets lonely. Eating alone, walking alone, seeing the cool sights alone. I met up with other backpackers at hostels and took some tours with them, but in the end, it was just me traveling the world. It teaches you something, and I’m glad I did it.
One of many new experiences was attending a movie by myself. Thanks to train schedules, I was stuck an extra day in a French city I’d already seen. I found a hole-in-the-wall movie theater showing American movies in English with French subtitles.Cost: 2 Euro.
Oh the joy! I escaped the hot sun in the cool, dark theater and wrapped myself in the comfort of hearing my own language and seeing familiar faces in Shrek 2 and Harry Potter. I forgot where and who I was, drowning my isolation in the movies. It’s something I’ll never forget.
I recently overheard a girl exclaiming how ridiculous it would be to go to the movies by yourself, and I smiled. I’ve done it, and it was fantastic.
Since returning, I have never gone to the movies alone. Here, it’s a social activity, and I don’t often want to shell out $12-15 for a movie anyway. But I feel like it’s something you should not be afraid to do.
Kevin and I go on a lot of bike rides. This weekend, we tried to bike with no hands, just as kids do.
The other day I saw a guy downtown reading a book while riding his bike hands-free. There’s some serious balancing skills.
I can’t do it. I only get a few feet before my hands come back to the handlebars to hold them steady. I had a lot of earaches as a child, and I think it has affected my balance. So much for that gymnastics career.
The day before, Kevin had asked if we wanted to invite other people along for a bike ride sometime. Sure, sometime, but not this time. Why not, he asked.
Good question. But the truth is, I like hogging Kevin to myself. I like our time together, especially on Saturdays. With our differing work schedules, Saturdays are the one full day I get to hang out with him. When we take bike rides, we do cute couple things, and we also push ourselves to ride farther. This weekend we rode for more than four hours.
Don’t get me wrong; I like to socialize with friends. I want to see them, but we tend to go out during the week, and we’re socializing on Friday nights. He’s usually out with people on Sundays while I work. Is it wrong to be selfish one day a week?
We’re trying to find balance in our social lives versus our couples life. We don’t want to be the couple that never goes out, never sees our friends. I don’t want people to say, “Well, she used to do cool things and go out a lot, but then she got a boyfriend.”
I feel I’m pretty good at balancing life in general, but when it comes to this, it’s a little more like the bicycle.
I think I say “no” too much, but I also think he says “yes” too much. He’s always the one to plan, to get things moving, to drive, to pay for the tickets or beer and have people pay him back. Why not let someone else take a turn?
I told him it’s one more reason we’re perfect for each other. He and I are yin and yang on this one. Maybe we can balance each other out.
It’s a dish I used to love. The flavor, the satisfying feeling afterward.
And after all, food brings people together. Dishing about boy information is something my friends and I used to taste daily.
I’m not even sure guys understand what kind of details women share. What’s he like? How was the date? Can you believe that douchebag said that to me at the bar? And yes: how big was he?
But my friends, mostly in serious relationships, don’t dish anymore. Neither do I.
Now, it feels almost sacred. Kevin and I have our couple stuff. But it’s our own flavor of behavior, and a dish we do not share with others. In fact, when another couple serves too much of it in front of others, we question the appropriateness. Keep your cutsie stuff in your own kitchen, please.
Sometimes I miss the flavor of the dish. Really, I just miss the connection it gave me with my girlfriends.
And there is no way I’d trade in the blissful happiness Kevin and I have just for that taste. Bliss is an entirely different thing: a whole sweet, salty, savory meal.
Do you ever notice a shift in sharing when in a serious relationship?
He clapped his hands together in front of him, and then gave me a thumbs up with each. I laughed.
The joke: I make that move all the time. I also (apparently) wiggle my head a lot when I talk.
When you’re single, there is no one around to point out these odd bits of behavior. Now, I have a keen observer, a mirror for my idiosyncrasies, I feel more self-conscious, and I find myself changing my ways.
He’s upset. He loves all my weirdo activities — even my sound effects and noises. The little quirks that make me who I am are part of who he fell in love with. He promises to stop pointing them out, but he can’t help but laugh at some of them. (Yeah, I’m pretty odd.)
For some odd reason, I can’t think of a single funny or odd thing he does. He talks out loud to himself, but so do I. And I think his facial expressions are funny, but they’re always intended to be — he likes to bug me and provoke reaction.
I guess I’ll just have to keep being weird. apparently, it’s a hit. *claps hands* *thumbs up*
Do you have any weird things you do that people point out?
As the writer said, “But the big surprise is that this is a distinctly minority opinion. Instead, in relationships where the man drives more, 113 of you said this was due to the woman’s preference, while only 43 said it was the choice of the man.”
I confess that Kevin drives more than I do. That’s because he likes to drive, and I don’t really care either way. Plus, his car is bigger and nicer, so we often take it for road trips instead of mine.
How about you? Who does the driving (at least behind the wheel) in your relationship?