my own private Idaho.
Since I’m not quite there yet with the language, having people chatting near me on the bus is not really a distraction. Although if someone is using their outside voice while on a cell phone I get annoyed all the same.
I don’t listen in while the person in front of me chats with the grocery store checkout worker. I rarely have to engage (beyond a sympathetic smile) in the frustration expressed by others in a slow bank line. And I can always plead ignorance when a party conversation turns boring and I start to drift.
I am grateful for this reality on days like today when the television is chatting endlessly about very provocative news events. It all passes me by, unless I choose to engage.
I’ve really had to get comfortable with the sound of my own inner voice. I am with whom I converse most. When not ruminating on my own I usually have a pair of ear buds in my ears and am listening to an American liberal news podcast of some sort.
I’m pretty much on my own.
Sure I could listen to Portuguese lesson podcasts, or carry my Portuguese dictionary and try to decipher what is going on around me. Been there. Done that. Exhausted.
No thanks – I enjoy my own company, and I enjoy not having to be a part of (if only clandestinely) every conversation around me.
There are definitely days when I overhear a conversation and think – “Wait, I understood that.” But then I usually turn up my iPod.