Monday, October 26, 2009
A Shudder Of Shyness
I don't know quite how to explain this, or even try to understand but, is it some kind of weird prejudice or simply my innate shyness ( of which many of my acquaintances are completely unaware)?
There's a local cafe which I love to visit, both on my own and with my beloved. Beverages and food served are of an excellent standard and, the environment is spaciously friendly so, what's the problem? The cafe has started advertising, via handbills, to the effect, "Over 60 but young at heart, join us for a chat etc;". For an extremely reasonable inclusive price, you're supplied with tea or coffee, home made scones, jam and cream, on a Monday from 2.30p.m. I love the idea and so, I decided to amble along there this afternoon. Looking through the window I spotted a cosy gathering of this particular client group but, something inside me said, "they're all oldies, no connection with you". Next, I took a little walk around the block and, on my return, glanced through the window again, paused for a few moments before heading off home.
I don't think it's ageism, after all I'm one of the golden oldies myself and, I certainly have friends that are most probably older than any of those in attendance and, a number of others considerably younger. Had any one of these people been on their own, I'd quite happily have sat down and had a chat with them but, this looked like an organized group and I'm not instictively a joiner. That may sound strange for someone who has been a member of all kinds of campaigning groups,left-wing political parties and sectlets, jazz clubs, literary groups and church house groups, in some cases to the extent of running them myself!
Perhaps it's some kind of timidity; my body quite simply resisted the urge to enter. I don't like barging in to what superficially looked like a closed circle; this could just be a case where my camoflauged shyness overcame a more gregarious veneer.