All by myself

I do stuff on my own a lot. Never had an issue with going to a movie on my own, or out to dinner. Must be only-child stuff. I’m more than happy to entertain myself. But it seems to make other people uncomfortable. Take last night. Was craving sushi. Called my usual sushi buddy, she was busy. Wondered if I could be bothered to make conversation with anyone else and decided, no. so pottered down the road to my favourite sushi joint.

Waiter: Hello madame, table for-?
Me: it’s just me
Waiter: are you expecting anyone else
Me: nope, just me.
Waiter: [blank stare]
Me: I’ll just take that little table in the corner
Waiter: um-ok
Me: Windhoek lite please
Waiter: is that a coke lite?
Me: um-no, a WINDHOEK lite please
Waiter: um, ok

That little waiter fumbled and stuttered his way through the next 50 minutes, while I read my book, noshed some outrageously good sashimi, rolls and roses and generally wondered why I’d made this poor boy so desperately wriggly. He wasn’t a novice, I’d seen him there before. He wasn’t overwhelmed by my charm and stunning good looks (that much, anyway). And he certainly wasn’t a bone fide ejit like I said, I’d seen him in action before, all cool and collected.

So what was it about a lone, beer drinkin’ woman that unsettled him. Did I upset his understood order of things? Did he think he had to talk to me? Did he feel sorry for me?

And he’s not the first one. Admittedly, it’s been a while since I’ve had such a noticeable reaction. (There was that one time a couple kept leaning over and asking if I would like to join them.) But why is it that I can’t enjoy an evening in public, on my own, without someone thinking I’m in dire need rescuing?

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107 thoughts on “All by myself

  1. dex says:

    Very confident girl, aren’t you?

    Oh and Windhoek Lite isn’t beer, darling.

  2. dolce says:

    yeah, I know Dex…but I’m trying to cut down the calories somewhere…and well, there’s actually no excuse…

    *hangs head in shame*

    I’ll be back on the Ammies next time!

    And not so much confident as just comfortable with my own company. Confidence is a whole other thing….

    Oi, and who you calling darling?

  3. dex says:

    My favourite after Heineken.

    But I do reckon it has a lot to do with confidence…

    Darling.

  4. garym says:

    Makes me think of my brother who lives in Toronto. When they go out, he normally drinks just ice-water with his meal. He noticed some really strange stares from the waiters when ordering this, and always had to repeat his order multiple times. He never really gave it much thought until one intrepid waiter refused him service.

    Upon investigation, and a talk with the manager of the establishment, he discovered that his accent had betrayed him.

    They all thought he was asking for arse-water.

  5. ramon says:

    When I go for a movie alone, people sometimes stare at me funny.
    Then I start walking funny, talk to my juice, throw popcorn and make misile noises and make sure I sit very near the most romantic couple.

  6. ramon says:

    Lion lager, the beer for champions.
    That’s a beer!

    Just pulling your chain.

    I do miss the old Windhoek Lager, though.
    Heineken is a good beer.

  7. dolce says:

    you sure know how to ruin a date! I have to admit, I’m suspicious of men alone at the movies too…especially if they sit behind me with a biiiiiig box of popcorn.

    Weirdos

  8. owners see them taking up tables that could seat two/three and waiters see themselves not getting a decent tip because the bill won’t be that high. See, single diners usually sit and nibble for an hour or so whilst reading a book and this can unsettle the workforce. Ha ha ha, I do exactly the same.

  9. flutter says:

    Heineken? I don’t like the finish. Give me a Windhoek anyday! Those draughts are damn nice. I have 6 cold ones just sitting in my fridge.

    Pilsner Urquells are damn nice too. Crisp and bitter. Yum!

  10. dolce says:

    My British friend had a similar experience learning Die Taal with his Afrikaans girlfriend…she’ kept telling him to roll his arse.

  11. flutter says:

    I get this all the time πŸ™‚ It’s hysterical!

    Also getting tire of getting referred to as Mrs !

    My best is when you’re dining with a guy, the waiter brings the drinks and gives you the wine and him the beer. Haha!

    Windhoek Lites – damn fine!

  12. dolce says:

    and I agree, Heinies taste funny. I’m an Ammie girl through and through. And out the bottle, the way it was meant to be. Natural. None of this poor it into a glass stuff. And I luuuuurved Victoria Bitter when I live in Aus, and y’all know how obsessive I am about Director’s Best when I’m in the UK. De.li.cious!

    Flip, do you think it’s wrong to pop out for a cold one at 10.03 on a Wednesday morning?

  13. dex says:

    taste funny. Heinies tastes good.

    And anytime is the perfect time for a cold one. I feel a pub lunch coming on…

  14. dolce says:

    I sometimes just want to make a scene, just to prove a point, but it’s pointless, really…they’re all on automatic pilot…give the chick the glass of vino and the slimmers steak and the guy the beer and the full ribs…but I LOVE the look on their faces when you smile sarcastically and swap everything around.

    And madame? Who the fek calls anyone madame anymore?

    Sheesh

  15. flutter says:

    Ah the joys of working for oneself!

    Never tried Victoria Bitter. Sounds delish!

    My all time favourite beer is a Belgian Leffe – blonde or dunkel. Stella Otois is great too πŸ™‚

    Paulaner Brauhaus has that nice malted Weisbeer….sighhhhh!

  16. flutter says:

    Peroni? – Italian beer

    Is it good?

    Yep Dex! I also see a pub lunch coming on. Bangers & Mash and a cold one…a LARGE cold one!

  17. dolce says:

    all those years of being a waitress myself!

    And I know all this management angst, but generally I’m there before the rush…a nice early dins…which means they are getting an extra table on their turn over. And if I’m treated really well somewhere on my own, I’m damn well going back with all my friends…shortsighted morons!

    Sometimes, I just don’t want to do the frikkin’ washing up, y’know!

    And I thought you might be a lone-nosher too…good!

  18. dex says:

    A lady who knows more about beer that I do.

    Have I told you lately that I love you?

  19. dolce says:

    La Dolce Vita? Jaaaa!

    But I was Dolce long before that little campaign, before you start wondering otherwise.

    It’s nice, but it ain’t got substance.

  20. dolce says:

    Ever been to the Birkenhead Brewery in Stanford? They’ve got some awesome little homebrews there…you can do a rather smudgey afternoon’s tasting and then cap it off with some pub grub…lovely!

  21. flutter says:

    Dexie, my love….

    Did I mention that I don’t fetch and carry them πŸ™‚

  22. dex says:

    and to think I called you a lady…

    πŸ˜‰

  23. flutter says:

    Spent last Chrismas in Stanford. Birkenhead Brewery? Love that place. They do yummy steaks too. Got really sloshed for lunch one day and we staggered out of there with a box or two. I am sure their beer has more than the prescribed levels of alcohol.

  24. flutter says:

    Men! There’s always a catch with you okes!

  25. dolce says:

    I spent Christmas in Stanford last year too. I was so trolleyed over lunch, I left the table and had a snooze and then came back. Hilarious.

    That brewery can be a dangerous, dangerous place!

  26. flutter says:

    La Dolce Vita Cool πŸ™‚

    Will give it a skip then…

  27. micatyro says:

    …Zoo Lake Bowling Club for me today, best cheap grub this side of Krugersdorp and beer at R8.50 a draught – really scenic setting as well, also seems to attract rather pretty young ladies (only to look at you realise).

  28. flutter says:

    I think we have wayyyy too much in common πŸ™‚

    It’s a little freaky! πŸ˜‰

  29. flutter says:

    See you guys can get loads of eye candy at a pub.

    All we get are beer boeps and loud burping.

    For eye candy, us chicks have to torture ourselves at the gym or Muathai classes! It’s not fair I tell you!

  30. dolce says:

    freaky indeed ;)!

    Are you regularly in Stanford, or where you just passing through?

  31. micatyro says:

    …the downside of the Zoo Lake Bowling Club is that the only reason the pretty girls are there is because they followed the young, hunky (not my prognosis) male students, who wear smelly old beanies and those pants that hang down somewhere near the back of the knee… good luck keeping the spotties at bay Dex!

  32. dolce says:

    Could not agree more. Although, to be fair, there are some pubs in Cape Town that offer some good views…La Med springs to mind.

    And Fluts…even I’m contemplating Muathai after getting an eyeful of Quentin in Woolies the other day. He’s yummy.

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  33. dolce says:

    was that you being curmudgeonly?

  34. micatyro says:

    …Old Fartly… my son is two, I have NO idea what he’ll be wearing in 14 years time!

  35. flutter says:

    Quinten is pretty hot but his older brother Vincent is super yummy and just sooo helpful! He’s about 6’4″ and seriously built! My gaydar gives me some strange feedback from V though!

  36. dolce says:

    by I agree…that man spends too much time on his hair.

    I’d so be there, drooling over the mats, but I’m scared of pain!

  37. flutter says:

    Have regularly stayed there for weekends away. There are some quaint old cottages that I frequent. Got to eat at Grootbos before it burnt down. That was a real shame. Also love that little cheese place past Birkenhead with the domesticated sheep running around chasing cars. Had some nice picnic lunches there.

    I should have bought property there when I moved to the Cape. Now everything is hellishly expensive. Sigh!

    Any you?

  38. flutter says:

    There’s pain. Lotsa PAIN!

    It’s like navy seal training!

  39. micatyro says:

    …name me some accomm, this sounds like a place I could take the family to… and it has a brewery! Small town SA makes for amazing getaways; ever been to Kaapschehoop on the lowveld escarpment near Nelspruit… pure bliss!

  40. dolce says:

    have a stud farm in Stanford…so I’m there once a month.

    Mica, it’s an awesome little village. My step mother is on the aesthetics committee, and they’ve really tried to keep all the buildings in the local vernacular…so it’s kept a lot of its charm. If you ever come down, make it the first weekend in December, they have a pony show, which the mini-mica might love.

    And Fluts, have you eaten at Marianna’s? Absolutely delicious famous Stanford gruyere souffle breakfasty things…oh my god!

    And Havercrofts…Innes and Bryden cook and entertain like fekkin’ angels.

    It’s a slice’a heaven, I tells ya!

  41. flutter says:

    It’s great for families although you have to book restuarants and activities in advance. They don’t do well with the lets show up instant gratification city slicker mentality. Try this site for accomodation etc.

    http://www.stanfordinfo.co.za

  42. flutter says:

    Havercrofts is wonderful and damn how the hell does one go to Marriannas. * she says salivating* She’s permanently booked out everytime I have been nearby only does breakfast and lunch. Sigh! Shes won a few awards apparently. Is Paprika up and running again?

  43. micatyro says:

    … a city slicker, I’m hardly ever out of shorts and prefer a braai in the back garden to Gold Reef City or Montecasino (bleagh!). We’d quietly try and slot right into village life as quick as poss. (I won’t wear shorts to dinner at one of those amazing sounding restaurants though – I have a smart pair of jeans and some shiny docs for that!).

  44. dolce says:

    I’m starting back up here…the thread was getting a bit thin….

    I always manage to sneak into M’s because of dad…locals seem to be able to get away with it. And my father is a great cook and every now and then he cooks up a storm for the chefs of Havers’, M’s and Paprika…so they luuurve him!

    Robyn and Jason always go away during the winter, so Paprika might be back up again by now…we don’t go there much anymore because they pretty much have the same things on their menue all the time. All.the.time! Yummy, yummy stuff, but sometimes you just want a new little tasteling!

    And the ribs at Hennies….excuse me while I swoon with mouth watering desire…they are soooo good, I could live on them. And the steaks. And his sosatis.

    I always eat like a piglet in Stanford…it’s evil, I tell you, evil!

  45. dolce says:

    Mica man…you and your fam would love Stanford. They even have a zebra and a minature horse (not my folks, some other people)

    And they have a blom and blitz festival during the year. And a bird watching one. And you can head over to Gansbaai or Hermanus to see the whales, or do any number of walks, or just laze away in a hammock, or take a cruise down the Kleinrivier on the African Queen or or or …

    ….can you tell I love the place?

  46. micatyro says:

    What times of year D? It would be great to be there during one or two of the local festivals, but December is too soon this year and Dec 2007 too far away. what is March like in Stanford?

  47. dolce says:

    they tend to move around…but the tourism bureau will be able to tell you. I’m a bit dozy with this kind of stuff…I just rock up. And March is lovely…nights starting to get nippy, but still perfect for a nice braai and a meal outside on the stoep.

    And if you plan it well, you’ll be in time for our farm-warming. My step mom is building the new house on the new farm as we speak.

    Think dam with jetty. Stables filled with ponies. A secret milkwood grove. Deep stoep with endless views and hammock from which to view them. A couple of great walks. And a beer fridge, filled with Ammies.

    Remind me why I live in CT again?

  48. flutter says:

    Hennies is great!!!!!!!! I too piled on the kgs while there. So many lovely places to dine.

    I. am. starving. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Think I’ll do an early lunch.

    PS: Stayed with the Angel lady Marriette last time. She was quite a hoot.

  49. not having to maintain conversation, not feeling bad about a rare steak if you’re with a veggie, not having to watch table manners, not doing funny hand games for the bill, not having to perve serrupticiously, not etc etc etc. One drawback is people coming up to you and asking if you’re actually reading. I usually stare and say no I’m not.

  50. dolce says:

    the vegetarians, who glare at you as you order a mixed grill with some peri-peri chicken livers to start.

    The only thing I haven’t mastered fully is how to continuously eat and read at the same time. Especially when there are lots of things to cut up. It’s a mission to have to keep putting your book down, cut up a few mouthfuls and then pick up the book again.

    That and splashback. Especially if it’s not your book!

  51. dolce says:

    not sure if I know Marriette….but there are lots of characters in Stanford. Ever cycled on the bicycle bar? 10 people, a counter attached to wheels, everyone with their own pedals, and someone (sober) to steer. Hilarious!

  52. nick one next time you’re in hospital, they’re worth their weight in chicken livers. As for splashback, well most of my reading is from second hand store lurking so adding more proof of reading to the existing coffee stains and ash is something I often feel compelled to do. But then I am also a marginal writer and doodler as well…hmmm…

  53. dolce says:

    I think I would start to feel a leeeetle self conscious if I rocked up to a noshpit de jour with my book and my bookstand. I could always nick my granny’s, if it got to that…she used hers for knitting.

    Now, I’ll admit, I’m an incorrigible spine breaker. And, I’ve already confessed to splashback. But writing in the margins, DO? Tell me it ain’t so? I get totally distracted from the story if there are scribblings around the text. Like footnotes. *shudder*

    But then again, you probably read non-fiction….

  54. non-fiction and I only write and doodle in my own books, kinda like the idea of having notebook and text in one cover. I never doodle and write in other peoples possessions. BTW if you are going to be part of the organisation of solitary noshers, how the hell can you be self conscious about a bookstand. In fact a musicians one would be ideal for you as you could set it up next to you instead of on the table, but then I bet your mom really came down hard on those that wouldn’t concentrate on the job at hand when dinner was dished up. The other possibility is to get to know the chef at your favourite destination very well and request that your food is liquidised and put into a closed cup with a straw.

    As for statements about incorrigble spine breakers…hmmm…well

  55. dex says:

    the bookstand. the stilletto’s. I can’t put my finger on it, but something doesn’t quite fit…

    Spinebreaker eh? Can b_p still walk, Dolce?

  56. dolce says:

    you just hold on to it for a while before it moves on. That’s why I love second hand book stores…I always wonder who has owned each book before me…and why it ended up in the store. The stories behind the stories behind the stories. But the human stories interfer with the book stories if there are notes. And I prefer to wonder.

    Ag, I’m just being pedantic.

    Sheesh. Still trying to get that hilarious vision of a musicians stand at Sushi Zone out of my head. Or liquidized sushi *gag*.

    Now, though, liquidised curry is yummy.

  57. dolce says:

    in fact I can do a lot of things in high heels, thank you very much!

    Oh, that’s not really what you meant?

    And B_P can walk, but he can’t hide!

  58. dolce says:

    double clicks can kill ya.

  59. dex says:

    thinking about all those things you can do in heels…

    deep breaths, Dolce. Deep breaths.

  60. dolce says:

    must be why I’m feeling all light headed. Lend me your pic of Mags, then?

  61. dex says:

    You so funny.

    I still got wieldoppe. Saving the extra money I get from my boerewors-roll caravan for the mags.

  62. dolce says:

    Dexter, you couldn’t make that datsan look sexy even if you stuck on a spoiler and lined the dash with lumo-purple faux leopard skin.

  63. dex says:

    but all I have to do is put myself into it then it is suddenly sexy.

    What sort of leopard is a fox leopard? was his mommy a fox ag shame arme ding

  64. dolce says:

    darling, is what yo mamma takes off when she’s dancin’ at Teasers.

    Now…you’re right, if you got in the datsun, the datsun itself would suddenly look sexy.

    darling

  65. ramon says:

    I can see it being a bit strange, seeing as how I always go and look at those places where the kids can get into those lame rides while I’m waiting for the movie to start.

    Sounds like the beginning of a CSI episode.
    Horatio vs. Child Molester.

  66. zephilla says:

    You must be hot then if you can make a datsun look sexy

  67. dex says:

    i get the feeling you dissing my momma.

    if i knew who my poppa was i’d phone him and he would come bliksem the snot out of you.

    In front of your whole family, right there in the trailerpark.

  68. zephilla says:

    till you have a kid and the two of you go for dinner….lots of sympathetic looks. I wish people would get over themselves. I would far rather enjoy dinner with my daughter, then sit opposite someone who I don’t feel anything for, barely exchanging a polite word.

  69. dex says:

    I was once voted second-best looking at a dogshow.

    That fuckin staffie. I’m sure his owner paid off the judges.

  70. dolce says:

    don’t make threats you might regret….

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  71. flutter says:

    D & D πŸ™‚

    You two are a riot!!!!!!

    *hahahhahaa

  72. dolce says:

    who eat in silence…fek, I’d rather read a good book, thank you very much!

  73. zephilla says:

    to tie your hair in nice bows for that show. judges love that.

  74. dolce says:

    yo mamma paid the judges in used faux to get you into second place!

  75. dolce says:

    [sotto voce] it’s like shooting fish in a barrel.

    Did you have a nice lunch? I had a manky old woolies meal. And no ammies.

  76. dolce says:

    or is Horatio strangely sexy?

  77. dex says:

    My wife also has a thing for him. Sies man.

  78. flutter says:

    Had me some bangers, mash and a Windhoek lite at Percy’s in Gardens – all by my lonesome πŸ™‚ Nobody in the office was willing to play..all running around like chickens in a slaughterhouse.

    BTW did you hear poor Dexie got run over by his Momma in her datsun on the way to a fake fur sale. Poor dear.

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  79. dex says:

    when the weaker sex tries to gang up on the invincibleness that is Dex.

  80. dolce says:

    or rather, I’d like to know him well.

    So, you’re wife does have some taste?

  81. zephilla says:

    ag shame…poor leetle Dexie.

  82. dolce says:

    Hey flutter…what if I told you I work round the corner from Percy’s and had bangers and mash there just the other day….

  83. ramon says:

    No, not at all.
    On the other hand, he is one of the greatest actors of his time.
    No doubt about that.

  84. zephilla says:

    if we’re the weaker sex….why are you a mouse instead of a man?

  85. dolce says:

    now go kill a spider or something and make yourself feel better!

  86. flutter says:

    I know. His momma has shocking taste in carpets and tiles.

  87. dex says:

    Shall not lower himself to the level you “ladies” are on.

    That, and he can’t think of anything to say.

  88. zephilla says:

    at the expression on leetle Dexie’s face. Not a happy puppy.

    And what did you expect with regards to his mommy? They from the West Rand.

  89. flutter says:

    This is getting a little too weird D.

    We should hook up for a drink sometime and drag B_P along πŸ™‚

  90. dex says:

    If his time consists of say, 20 minutes or so.

  91. dex says:

    You two won’t get along. At all.

  92. dolce says:

    Anyone gonna come and help Dex out? He’s being beaten up by the girls.

  93. dex says:

    See I’m doing this AND some applied rocket science for work. So there are moments when I simply cannot respond effectively to your limp-wristed little punches.

    erm.

  94. dolce says:

    me and the Missus could talk

    …how hard did you have to hit her over the head before you dragged her into your cave?

  95. dolce says:

    I kid you not. And it is too weird. And you’re on ;-)!

  96. dex says:

    Darling, for disrespectin’ me.

  97. dolce says:

    I do respect you. Like, lank.

    but your wife can still have me for breakfast.

  98. dex says:

    Dolce: 4214
    Dex: 0

  99. dex says:

    that carpet matches the caravan walls quite superbly, actually.

  100. ramon says:

    A Hollywood actor is a Hollywood actor.
    What I mean by ‘great actor of his time’, as you know, is poor.
    Horatio is right down there with The Hoff, Norris, Shwchhcwhchccwharchinegger and Stallone.

    Hollywood actors, in general, suck.
    Only a couple worth mentioning, though:

    Tarantino is brilliant (as an actor)
    Ed Norton is a genius
    Phillip Seymore Hoffman is great

    Other than that, no.
    Can’t think of any, really.

  101. ramon says:

    Love to stay and chat, but I’ve got this thang.

    Anyone know what happened to Andreas, btw?
    Miss that guy.

  102. dolce says:

    he’s being rude. Probably lurking.

    And the old candyman thing didn’t work.

    Or calling him a poofter.

    Or implying he wears girls pants. (Ok, I made that up)

    AAAAAAAAA JJJJJJJJJJJJJJJJJ?

  103. dolce says:

    my work here is done.

    And it’s been fun…*grin*…nite nite bucko…

  104. zephilla says:

    Whatever happened to sugarnspite…she sorta resurrects the blog and then does that *poof* thing again.

  105. solvej says:

    I can’t believe that Havercrofts have not had more rave reviews! This is one of my favourite restaurants.

  106. bovinerebel says:

    Drink your stupid wine coolers and brutal fruit and leave our beer alone…

    beer is the stuff of champions , not to be drunk by women , who lets face it…are a bit crap .

  107. dolce says:

    Hilarious, my dear boy. Hilarious.

    Now let me womble off and find a nice cold ale. Clearly not an amstel, ’cause Heineken have fekked that up nicely for us. Maybe an icy Windhoek. Or try something new.

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