I’m an only child, which invariably means I’m pretty skilled at being alone. Couple this with the fact that I lived on my own for most of my teen and young adult years, and you have the recipe for someone who views time alone as time well spent.
This is not to say I don’t enjoy the company of family and friends, or that I don’t look forward to date night, or seeing my writing group on Tuesdays. But there is nothing quite like me, myself, and I, hanging solo.
So, what do “we” get up to? Here are six things I love to do on my own that my family and friends think are pretty darn weird.
1. Going to the Movies
The first time I went to the movies alone, I was a teenager. I had planned to meet friends at the theatre, but at the last minute, both friends got stuck at home. That first time was a little strange, since going to the movies in our teen years is less about the actual show and more about hanging out. Since then, however, I’ve developed a taste for sitting alone with my buttery popcorn and blue icy. The last movie me, myself, and I saw together was Black Panther.
2. Working Out
I go to the gym at least once per week. Sometimes I drag family and friends along, but most times I go alone. Often, when men see me at the gym, they approach me under the pretext of seeking a gym partner, claiming they get more done when they have someone else with them.
“I wouldn’t make a very good gym partner, then,” I tell them. “Even when I take people with me, I work out alone. I prefer it that way.”
I haven’t done this in years, but in Jamaica, snorkelling alone was one of those daredevil things I did on the weekends that drove my mother crazy. It may not sound like much, but snorkeling alone is actually quite dangerous. The smallest recommended outing is in groups of three.
So, why did I choose to go out on my own, especially since I’m not a strong swimmer? Snorkelling was one of the best things about living on a tropical island, but few of my friends were really into it, and those who were rarely made the time. So, I could spend ten years waiting for them, or I could go alone. I chose the latter.
The new solo-activity which drives my mother absolutely crazy is hiking. I started out solo-hiking in Atlanta, and then eventually travelled all the way up to New England to hike in Massachusetts and New Hampshire on my own. My mother is convinced that sooner or later I’ll be kidnapped, robbed, or otherwise assaulted for being out and about as a female on my own.
That may be true, but a life lived beneath the shadow of fear is a life not lived. I love hiking with Tristan out west, and a date-day on the trails is always a good one, but there is a bit of peace in walking those trails alone sometimes that cannot be denied.
5. Attending Concerts & Music Festivals
The first music festival or concert I attended by myself was Vans Warped Tour in 2017. My mother was so concerned by this that she almost bought tickets to attend, though she cannot stand rock music. I assured her I was fine and that I was looking forward to going on my own. I had an amazing time.
Going with friends to a multi-stage festival is always great, but it was just as great not having to negotiate about what acts to see and when was lunch time. Since then, I have been to one other concert on my own, where I saw Hollywood Undead, Deadset Society and Misty Eyed. I plan to see a lot more this year, with or without company!
6. Dining Out
Of all the things I enjoy doing on my own, this is the one my friends seem to find the strangest. When I take myself out to dinner, I bring a book and my Bluetooth Keyboard, making a date with words. While I eat, I read, and in-between waiting on food and the check, I write.
The only time I ever felt watched was when I did this in New England on my solo-trip. The waitress at the table across from mine looked thoroughly confused, not only by the fact that I was out eating alone, but that I was having a good time doing it.
Do you also take yourself out on play dates? What are some of the amazing things you’ve done on your own, or would love to try? Tell me all about it in the comments, below? PS:- Hanging out alone on the couch doesn’t count. 😝