I arrived at the coffee shop at my regular time, got my usual and sat at my usual table…in the corner…..away from everyone….facing the wall. And there I sat, with my book, notebook, and coffee ready for a wonderful afternoon. What a glorious afternoon it was going to be with the rain coming down in sheets and the comfortable surroundings…
And then….HE showed up. Dripping wet, shaking his wet raincoat all over the place like a dog, and dribbling water everywhere! Then he decided to sit next to ME! I admit it, I could have gotten up to move, and probably should have moved. After getting his coffee, HE returned to his dripping table and decided that my posture and my not looking or talking to anyone was his cue that I was up for a conversation! And so it began…
HIM: “Rainin’ pretty hard, eh pal?” I kept reading.
HIM: “You sure got here just in the nick of time. I got soaked to the bone.” I kept reading.
HIM: “Whatcha readin’ there sport?” He reached over and touched my book.
ME: “I hope you won’t take this the wrong way, but I was enjoying the peace and quiet and my book. So if you please…”
HIM: “Don’t have to tell ME twice. I know I’m a talker, I’m in sales by the way, I can talk to anyone about anything.”
ME: “I understand. Might you also possess the skill of NOT talking?” Go back to my book.
HIM: “Well….aren’t YOU just the quiet one. All I want to do is pass the time in conversation. What’s WRONG with you?”
At this point, I had reached the end of my tolerance of his intolerance. I looked him square in the eye and said, “Look! Out of ALL the people in this cafe I was sitting here BY MYSELF enjoying the peace and quiet and my book. YOU somehow determined that I required your company and conversation even though I do NOT recall giving off that indication. YOU are the one who disturbed me. I did not disturb you. Yet you seem to think, because I enjoy the quiet, that there is something wrong with ME? How dare you! Why could you not have taken the hint and LEFT ME ALONE?”
HIM: “Sheesh! I’ll go away.”
I don’t understand why people like this miss the cues that introverts enjoy the quiet, and enjoy being alone in a comfortable place, and enjoy coffee and a book. I don’t understand why some people simply cannot understand that there ARE those of us who do not have the need or desire to talk incessantly to anyone and everyone. Would someone please help me understand?