Day 23 – #SOL2021: Becoming an introvert

FYI this is an old Photo – everyone had masks on! It was safe – sort of!

People, young people mainly but people and more people kept coming in and milling around. It is 4:45 p.m. on a Monday and the place was packed!

Ok, it was full but not really packed.

We now almost always go to Trader Joes on Sunday morning between 9 and 10 am. It is senior hour and there are very few people in the store. There are usually more workers than customers. We did go on Sunday but for some reason we forgot the peaches and applesauce we always buy. They are a staple in our diet and they are Little Man’s afternoon treat. A bowl of peaches after nap is always a great thing.

Missing this staple we decided to run over, once Little Man had gone home for the day. No big deal we thought. As we drove up and park there really was no line so great this will be easy. Doug decided to get a few bottles of wine while I picked up the fruit. We would meet outside.

In I go to find I can barely move my cart around. There are folks standing around or moving slowing just picking things up and putting them down. There were several groups of young woman shopping together – roommates I am sure. One group of young women were headed to the check out – each of them was carrying one item to buy. One was carrying a bag of celery, one with a jar of sauce and another with an onion. Really, did all three of them need to be here to buy those three items.

I am making my way to the middle aisle where the jars of fruit are but find I am getting hotter and hotter. My mask is bothering me and I realize I just really want out of this later afternoon party at the Trader Joes. I grab the fruit as quickly as I can from behind the lady that will not move and head to the check out.

There are four check out lanes with at least three people waiting in each lane. I am working internally to calm myself down. Really, this is no big deal! I have been in longer lines and more congested places in my life. I have had the first vaccine and am wearing a good tight mask. No one is coughing and they all look healthy. I still wonder why the check out person is spending five minutes cooing with the baby in the cart instead of ringing up the women’s food.

Finally another employee comes to open another register even though they will be to close together. He lets people know and calls me over. I sigh with relief and gladly have my jars of fruit checked out and I head to the door.

I am so happy to be outside away from people. I usually like to see people. I enjoying talking with people but after a year of being away from groups and a year of wondering who is healthy and who do I need to worry about I find I am very happy to shop during senior hours. I am very happy to order things on line instead of going to a busy store.

It is an odd feeling for me to be comfortable with being alone or in small groups. It is strange for me to not be seeking out others to walk with. I am happy walking alone. This past year has made some changes in me I did not expect. I seem to be happy with becoming an introvert. I always wondered how my sister spent so much time alone. Now I seem to understand.

I am curious to see if this is a lasting change or just a temporary swift due to Covid. I guess time will tell. For now I will be sure to buy my fruit on Sunday in the quiet of the senior hour.

About Joanne Toft

I am a retired Minneapolis Public School teacher. I walk, garden, care for my Grandson and write. Life is good!
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7 Responses to Day 23 – #SOL2021: Becoming an introvert

  1. I think you touched on so many things in this post. I agree I have realized a lot about myself this year and I do think I will make changes in the future. I too wonder when I will want to go to a restaurant or stay in a hotel – I haven’t really missed either. I think it will take some time for all of us to find our way in a post-pandemic world. Thank you for sharing this slice – you wrote what so many are feeling write now.

  2. I feel like I enjoy more time alone as well. The first few times we went into a grocery store I got very nervous. We still order ours to be delivered and I only run into Walgreens for a few things which is never that busy. I think with vaccines being given more frequently, the rush should calm down. Our introvertness may stay or go based on seeing friends – I think I will still be bothered by other people around me at times.

  3. arjeha says:

    Yes we have all been changed by this. How we come out on the other side is still anybody’s guess. Luckily we live is a very small community so no matter when I go to Redner’s it is not usually crowded.

  4. Rita K. says:

    Like you, I notice changes in myself. I’m enjoying decreased pressure to be out and about. I’m much more selective about where I go and who I’m with. More thoughtfulness in my part seems to be leading to more serenity. Loved your post.

  5. VanessaVaile says:

    I see and read about similar reactions and worries about change and how the pandemic will have changed us coming out on the other side. There’s even an acronym for it: PPS or post-pandemic stress (with or without the D — I’d opt for another S instread).

    A book-worm only child whose family moved frequently when I was growing up, who continued to move more often than the norm and ater took to the tubz like a duck to water, I’ve always done well with solitude. Now 77 and living alone in a small apartment in senior housing in a rural small town since 2015, this year hasn’t been so hard for me or changed much. I can tell the change has been harder on others. The uncertainity worries us all.

    • Joanne Toft says:

      Vanessa I agree the worry is hard on us all. I am hoping now with vaccines that that worry and stress will be less as summer arrives. Hope you have found some great books to read this last year!

  6. I too, often wonder how long it will take us to be comfortable without masks, being in each others homes, inviting people over, and sharing rides. This is a good point, and I love the way you drew the reader into your experience – I found my self sharing your frustrations as well. Luckily slicing is a solitary pursuit with great rewards! Thank you !

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