i grew up being alone, so I've never experienced as an adult any anxiety about being alone, as some of my friends have. perhaps for this reason it was easy for me to settle into our two years of mountain hermitage in canada. very easy, in fact - i loathed going into town for even basic supplies. aside from monthly visits from family, i can count the number of direct interactions we had in those two years on one hand - the day the fellow down the street came to visit, the day the jehovah`s witness ladies came calling and admired the rocks in our yard a little too intensely, the day we had wood delivered and found out another japanese lady was living somewhere over the mountain though we never found her, the day we had our roof replaced and had coffee and donuts with the workers, the day the fellow we lovingly nicknamed `crazy santa` (a fellow mountain hermit) biked by while i was out in the garden and responded to my `good morning` with friendly wave and a mouthful of strange nonsense as he intensely biked by at a snail pace (in a hurry uphill), the day the strange fellow from the spray painted fortress showed up on our front porch thanking us for putting out such good trash on the big cleanup asking us if we had any more garbage, and the daily drive-by-and-honk from the postal service driver, our only friend.
a little big more cooped up, for the two months when we lived with my inlaws i basically resided in a tiny space between the bed and the wall in a room upstairs - if i thought to go out somewhere, people were like - but why? where? i lived on my iPad.
and my childhood- most of my memories are of being in my room, lying on my bed nose deep in a book, listening to music, writing, or doodling fashion designs or the layout of my ideal future house.
and now, being jobless for the past months in kyoto i spend alot of my time indoors - it`s played into my frugality (to go out is to spend money) and then the double burn criteria i learned for going out, but why? where? in my thirties i became more still, more content, and i can get more work done on the loom while i am at home.
although - all this hermitage has taken a serious toll on my communicative abilities in english! my minds grinds and whirs trying to keep up with fast-talkers and quick witted folks. i used to have the sharpest tongue around - sarcastic and quippy as the day was long, and now i am slow to process, fuzzy tongued, dull. my writing also became quite fogged, but i think it`s slowly thawing from the deep freeze as i practice more. i never get lonely anymore, i am never bored while alone, but i do miss communicating and metacommunicating in my native tongue and having a well oiled brain that runs at lightening speed. at the training session yesterday a girl ten years my junior and fresh from north america said cheerily `it`s a debate! jump in!` a debate - i remember those, vestigial linguistic appliances. things from the old country. i used to be the most argumentative thing around, but lately i am the one who agrees, quick to nod, sure to shadow, listening more than talking. i have to get used to being around people!
for now, alone in kyoto