Tuesday, December 2

guerilla conversation

My social skills are in atrophy. They were not very sharp to begin with, but after a year and a half abroad, I'm starting to have real problems. First off, shhh, I'm blogging. Yikes. Second, my need to converse seems to be cumulative. The result of this is that when I do find someone to talk to, I assault them with conversation.
You can imagine the effect that has.

Actually, most people seem to take it in stride. If I'm lucky, they're also a foreigner and feeling just as isolated as I am and we just beat each other into the ground. But sometimes I accidentally unleash on an unsuspecting Italian.

I was pissed off today and I carried this stupid pissed off feeling around with me all day because I just didn't have anyone to vent to. It was driving me nuts. I kept telling myself to just let it go, it's a silly thing to be upset about... but I just couldn't shake it.

Poor Michele. He's one of the guys at work that speaks some English. I was trying to stick to casual conversation, fearing what might happen to what little relationship there was between us if I unleashed my brewing frustrations. But he's also one of those wonderful people that asks you how you're doing and really wants to know. And such a kind face.

UGH. I exploded all over him after lunch, just as we would normally have simply parted ways. I could even see the reeling in his face in the process but I just couldn't disengage. What a trooper. He hung in there and actually conversed with me about the situation. Validation. Empathy. And hardly any signs of shell shock. Ugh, this should be so much easier. But I think Michele and I could actually become friends. I just wish I didn't have to feel like a socially inept science dork in the process... oh, wait...


  1. Hmmm...Maybe you just jumped an important barrier?

  2. I am sorry you feel so isolated by the language barrier. I can imagine that is really tough.

    I used to feel that way when I was at stay at home Mom with my baby. I would bombard anyone I could with as much conversation as possible. Of course now that my son is speaking I really miss the quiet! :)

  3. I know, know, know what you mean. sometimes seeing a westerner in the street i want to chase them down. talk to me!

  4. We word people feel marooned among "other-speakers." We're here for you! aloha-

  5. derfina... I know. I find my best friends only after taking those unnerving risks.

    Janna... I agree.

    lizzy-loo... EXACTLY

    Cloudia... thanks, my island friend ;)

  6. I know exactly how you feel! There are days when i just start yelling at the cars that are honking at me and the people hissing at me because they don't understand and i don't understand.

    But this is one time i totally understand. **Hugs**

  7. You took the leap , now just run with it and see where it goes !! Good times are ahead !!

  8. Ok ! First steps taken. Wonderful ! The road must lead somewhere.


...and you may ask yourself, well...how did I get here?