There is something incredibly strange and fascinating when an Introvert finds himself/herself surrounded by plenty of Extroverts. At moments the person can feel incredibly overwhelmed and lost, but an incredible experience can be drawn and felt from a night/day like my day yesterday. As I predicted before the actual day, yesterday was all about surprises and trying to manage and adapt to a circle of people that are different, that are unlike me. I had no idea, that it would be as ”complicated” and as impromptu. Especially the second birthday that I was unsure I will be going to.
The first one, a quite relaxing one, with one of my closest friends, and the atmosphere was peaceful and understanding. Nothing too special and not many surprises. Just 4 friends + one sheepshagger obviously born in Wales. As it goes, the sheepshagger, a pretty cool person, always used sarcasm. At a point even I wanted to take a break from the immense usage of sarcasm and humor, even though I enjoyed the conversation quite a lot. From Black Holes, to White Russians, to Area 51, to CERN to why Welsh people are called sheepshaggers to an imitation of how Englishmen drink their tea. Totally new experience all in all. After that, a small break, a pause before the hurricane. A walk around Como (city in northern Italy) with an autumn jacket, on a cold weather. Luckily the sweater and the shirt were enough for me to feel warm and to feel the magic feeling that cold weather brings. Cold weather brings so many emotions, and it activates your mind in that special way. Especially if you are an introvert.
As me and my friends were coming back, by train, along lightless small towns between Como and Milan, I am asking my friend whether we are going to the second birthday, and he categorically says no who cares. At that moment I lose my will and interest as well to go. And then a phonecall, from the girl that was organizing the second birthday. She called my friend, and as he can’t say no in his life, he changes his mind just like that, and just like that I realize while she is talking to her that we are going. And something weird happens. I feel better and happier, even though I am by nature an Introvert and I don’t care so much about birthdays as much. But this second one was a tricky one. I knew that 2 girls (at least) will be present that I have a short history with and maybe just maybe a what I predict a short to at most medium-length history with one of them, or who knows maybe the two of them, in different periods of life.
Now the history part. The first story dates 4 years ago, from when one of the girls found out that I listen to Tiziano Ferro, and she became interested in me. At first, like the arrogant bastard I am at times, I had almost no interest in her. And then after a period of time, as it happens, our lives took different paths. I got married (and luckily divorced), she got a boyfriend, a bit of flirting initiated by her 2 years ago, a missed encounter in Florence where she claims that I saw her and ignored her, a moment I tried convinced her, I was totally unaware of. A moment that she reminds me of everytime she sees me, and because of the fact she reminds me of it, convinces me that she does hold a grudge about it for a reason. And I am sure she wouldn’t if she didn’t have at least a crush for me. The second story, a really short one with the second girl, dates from 5-6 months ago, when I occasionally met this girl, that at first glance (and second and third), seemed shy, had looks that I easily fall for, and a height decent enough for me, which I also fall for. It was just a brief encounter, an encounter after which I was sure she wouldn’t remind me, because I was tired, not so interested in anything, with long hair and not so nicely dressed, unlike her, that was ready for a night out, for an aperitivo, with her friends. After the invitation from her friend, the one that had the birthday yesterday, to hang out with them I had to say no, because first I was tired, second I was as described before, not ready for that. And something told me that for her, I had to be ready. I was not mistaken. I just said to myself back then, that I have to wait for another opportunity to present myself as I know and start from there. As we all know history is quite important.
To continue my story after that history bit, there I was, heading with my friend to a neighborhood that I knew, close to where I recently moved out from, a decent Milan neighbourhood. Curious about what will happen next and planning things even before I saw anyone at that birthday. Finally we arrive there. I am now regretting that I am wearing my black sneaker shoes that I use normally when I go to the gym. Because I know that I will be on the spot. Wrongly so maybe but it is how the things function in Italy, fashion and style is very important, which is normal. First encounter, with the girl that I have more history with. Immediately I can notice that she changes her mood when I enter and starts telling her friend (the one that organizes the birthday) something. Now, maybe I am self-centered, and at moments I am, but I think that I can still notice these type of things and I can read people quite well. And the night starts to unveil it’s complicated cloth. A normal conversation, that has to pass with a beer and some chips as its the case on birthdays. At least birthdays organized by people at that age. Actually that part of the night was more stable and more beautiful, just 6 people at that point, not so much crowd, a conversation that was lead by all, and all can join it. And then, people started arriving one by one. The atmosphere is becoming dense, it is becoming less entertaining and more individualistic. It’s not a unity anymore, the hypothetical unity is formed from lots of different stories that are led between the participants, stories that will probably be forgotten by some and that little magic that was present before, will never be replicated and will be forgotten as well. As time passes, I happen to know more and more people, that to be honest I have no interest it, because they are plain. Wow, what I snobby way of putting it and saying that right away about people you are just seeing. A kind reminder, I can read people pretty well, and I am sure that others are like that. It’s not a sign of arrogance, it’s a sort of a bad talent, or a bad habit. Diverse people, theoretical IT non practitioner guy (What? That exists?), and a lots of people studying design or architecture. And there she is, the second girl, finally she arrives. This is when the night becomes interesting and more complicated. As I predicted. She congratulates the birthday girl, and I could see her marvelous eyes wandering around the small room. As she is becoming a bit tired from looking at all of the people around her, her eyes lighten as she sees me. Just for a second. But that second is quite crucial. You either notice that moment, or you don’t. And it’s quite important if you notice it. It tells you a lot of things. Sometimes I wonder whether my life would be less complicated if didn’t have that ability to notice that. There she was, a little confused, but she sits next to me. Like it’s a general rule, like it is meant to be like that. After the initial getting to know each other, I can tell that she probably doesn’t remember me, but she does want to get to know me, more than she wants to get to know others, because I am different now, different than that night 5-6 months ago. And I have mixed feelings right away. Mixed because, she is different. She thinks that she is above others. Her style, the way she speaks indicates that, the way she becomes boring if you don’t entertain her. So more or less similar to me. And things wouldn’t be fun if they are not complicated. Complicated because that behaviour is the behaviour that I am attracted to. At the same time I want that she is less extroverted. But I can notice while talking to her, and looking at her eyes, distanced 20 cm away or so, that she is actually timid. She is shy around me, she is reserved, and she wants to get to know me more. Which is all nice. But there is that feeling, that is there after the night, that she might be too different. Too extroverted. But at the same time something tells me that I will see her again, and I might have something with her. What, I can’t say that right now. Whether I will, it doesn’t depend just on me. Lots of different factors are in place. Whilst the night was passing, at one moment I could tell I am at the center of attention. And it happened suddenly. I started speaking in English, and then as if everyone wanted to get to know me. And even though it flatters me, I hate to be in that position. Because from when I was young, I hated having to dedicate attention to all. Because it’s not possible. Because it’s just a waste of time for me. And people’s behaviour is strange in that sense. Before that moment, before I started speaking English, I was the stranger, After that, I could tell that all their eyes were focused on me. Maybe because I have that effect on people. Maybe because I have that way of getting people interested in me, especially women/girls. A passive way, which proved in the past to be effective. What matters is that I was not prepared for that part as well. After a while I was quickly tired, and as it was nearing 23:00, I became really tired and I needed a smoke. At the end, when me and two of my friends left, I hugged the girl that I have more history with, and I looked the second girl, as she stood up and our eyes met again as many times that night.
My instincts are entangled now, and I have to rely on them to know how to proceed. Or I can just wait and see what happens in the future. Something will, something always does. What, only time, our actions coupled with our previous actions and history will tell.
Extroverts love summer, Introverts love winter, ones complete the other ones, light and fire must complete each other, yin and yang as well, Englishmen and sheepshaggers for sure.