I was sitting there midday Friday when my interviewer suddenly changed the course of our conversation and asked what my plans were for the weekend. Not sure if this was a trick question to suss out if I’m a boy crazy booze hag or an honest interest in how I like to spend my free time. I would like to think it was the latter and before my thoughts came spilling out of me like diarrhea, I very ineloquently launched into a speel about a little bit of this and a little bit of that but mostly with tourists as I don’t know a lot of locals yet.
And there it was, my biggest fear shining in broad daylight for everyone (well the two of us in the room anyway) to see. I’m still swimming around in a sea of starter friends not knowing who’s real, who’ll fade away, and who’ll be the unfortunately few forming my urban family in this country. I know that I’m constantly ridiculed for my fear as I meet a lot of people everywhere I go but for me it’s that struggle between acquaintances and friends. I’m someone who has acquaintances swarming around me like bees but it’s those few that know the little details of my life that I hide from the rest of the world that I truly consider a friend. There are times when it can be a fine line between the two but I always find that some event will eventually be the telltale sign. I know that this is the 4th city that I’ve lived in and I’ve managed to get it together for the other 3 but at this stage, I can’t help but think that without real friends, living here will seem overwhelming lonely at the best of times…thank god for cheap flights and friends in England!
So truth be told, how I should have answered the interviewer’s question was that this weekend, I’ll be starting construction on my new Irish urban family. I’ll be searching high and low through locals and people working abroad alike and going anywhere from pubs to parties to see if I can find like-minded souls who love to eat, can boogie with the best of them, and know how to laugh so this city can start to feel a little bit more like home. If I only had a time machine, I could go back and save her from my random mumbling and the need to suggest that maybe I should try taking a tour of the city to get a feel for what’s out there.