The time is 5:37 on a Wednesday evening, and I’m sitting alone at an empty dinner table eating my chicken paella and catching up on bills. The sun has bid me farewell nearly half an hour ago, leaving a blanket of darkness to cover my city. A bottle of wine sits in my kitchen and I consider opening it, pouring myself a glass, and snuggling on the couch to watch TV.
But alas, I have two standing invitations tonight, both of which I tentatively agreed to attend. While part of me sees the societal value of going out, another part of me wants nothing to do with anyone, and prefers to enjoy a quiet evening of welcome solitude.
The time is now 6:00 P.M. and I wonder what has gotten into me. I’ve never considered myself an introvert but lately I would prefer a quiet evening with a glass of red wine, to a room full of people taking shots. I can hear the wind howling outside. The weather man would call it a wintry mix.
Wintry mix, sounds enchanting right? Don’t be fooled. It’s a chilling combination of snow, wind, and darkness. When did it become normal for meteorologist to put a positive spin on shit weather like this?
But honestly, I’m complaining about the mildest winter I have ever seen. Complaining and looking for an excuse to remain at home. Only twice this winter have I etched credit card marks into my windshield to get the ice off. Only once have I stuck my hand out the window to feel the falling snowflakes. And most mornings I run out to my car in a cool damp air filled with chirping birds and the aroma of spring rain.
My phone buzzes on the dining room table with a text from M.
She says I should come tonight, regardless of the cold, and to bring a blanket with me.
If I’m being completely transparent, I will admit that my invitation was to attend what is often referred to as a ‘Bachelor Bash’. It’s a viewing party of the TV show The Bachelor, where people watch and bash the silliness of the dramatized reality show.
In college it was a favorite winter pastime. As an adult it’s just a guilty pleasure.
The time is 6:48 P.M. and I’m reluctantly putting on my shoes. Although my couch looks incredibly comfortable and I’d rather not risk my car breaking down in the cold, or getting into an accident, I grab the bottle of wine from the kitchen and venture out.
Most winters I get a case of the blues, or symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder. This time I’ve simply become a shy wintrovert.