Monday, January 28, 2013

An Introvert Infected with the Travel Bug

I am afflicted with the travel bug.

As you can imagine this makes it quite hard to lead an introverted life. Part of me hates people while the other loves peoples and cultures and languages.

When in Puerto Rico, my sister spoke Spanish for me because I could not. I would tell her to say something, listen to the response, and then make the appropriate response in English for her to translate.

"How come you can understand it but you can't speak it?" she asked.

"I hate speaking English to begin with," I answered.

A writer? Hate English?

Not English, but speaking. Though I speak a lot and at length, I dislike it. If I had another way to quickly convey thoughts, I would much prefer it. (I still haven't mastered quicker short-hand or texting skills than the speed at which my brain thinks.)

I have found many writers are like me. They need to travel. They need people. But they don't thrive surrounded by people. We are introverts forced to be extroverted for the sake of better writing.

We enjoy our English written, not spoken.

We enjoy our alcohol solitary, not social.

We enjoy our company reserved, not rambunctious.

That is not to say, we will not drink at a party or ever attend a party to start with. I use the word "enjoy"  purposefully. No, we will go to a party (sometimes of our own will) because we know that we have to get out of our stacks of books and glaring computer screen.

It's just that we do not get energy from it. We need down time. Alone time.

In Puerto Rico, during the second night of the festival, people were congregating in the hostel, laughing and drinking and socializing. My sister found me in our room down the hall on the bottom bunk. I was reading comics online and writing in my journal. I had to explain that I was having a perfectly good time and I was perfectly happy being just as I was.

"But you don't look happy," she said.

I shrugged. "But I am."

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