Table For One

Today for lunch I did something that I have done very few times before.  I went to a restaurant – alone.

I don’t really enjoy dining alone.  I’m not sure why.  I have no trouble doing other things alone, like going to cinema (which I quite enjoy), but dining alone makes me feel like a social pariah. I know this shouldn’t be the case, but for me it is.  If I have a book with me, then I feel a tiny bit more comfortable.  I can lose myself in my book and block out the thoughts that everyone in the restaurant is starting at the girl who is eating alone.

Strangely enough, I can eat in a fast food restaurant alone without any problems.  There are times when I actually go to a fast food place just so I can make time to sit and read my book.  However, going to a proper restaurant alone makes me deeply uncomfortable, even when armed with a book.

On the positive side, dinning alone meant that I had this for lunch instead of some greasy burger

Bún mit Chả – gegrilltes Sesam-Schweinefleisch

Does anyone else have this issue?  Any tips on making dinning alone an enjoyable experience other than making sure you bring a good book?  Or is it a case of the more times you do it the easier it gets?

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7 thoughts on “Table For One

  1. Oh God I absolutely hate dining at a proper restaurant by myself – and because I’ve had to do quite a bit of travel for work I’ve had to do this often enough that it shouldn’t be an issue, so in answer to your question – for me the number of times I’ve done it have not made it any more comfortable. What is with that? I never look at others eating alone and think anything of it (other than that I wish I had that confidence) so I don’t know where this comes from. As for your lunch – yummy!

  2. I totally have this issue too! I find it extremely difficult to dine alone. I think it’s because I associate food and large meals with gatherings of friends and/or family so eating alone feels isolating and lonely.

    • I think you might be onto something here. For me as well, dining out is always a social event whether it is a large number of people or something more intimate. Dining by myself is the exact opposite.

  3. If I ever go to a place to eat by myself I always need to be doing something else at the same time like reading or writing. I don’t know why. I guess I just have a need to do something at the same time so I’m not just sitting there. In other words, I know how you feel.

  4. I eat alone quite often- it’s always more fun with someone else, but when you’re a stranger in a strange land, it’s a necessary thing.

    Like most of the other commenters, I always wind up doing something else like reading while I eat.

  5. Like other commentors I feel uncomfortable eating alone, doing something definitely makes it easier and I have no problem in cafes but many of the same hang-ups about eating alone at a restaurant. Don’t judge other people who eat solo though. As somebody who enjoys solitude I think it’s more to do with my fear/dislike of being judged by other people.

    I love, really love, having a drink alone with no company except my Kindle.

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