I spent 18 years of my life staring at wide open fields, blank canvases of blowing snow, long stretchese of pink/blue skies and the sharp twinkle of the entire milky way. With the nearest neighbors two miles away - and nearest town five - I got used to feeling 'out there' by myself.
You get used to feeling alone, one small speck of nothing witnessing the cosmic drama of the universe and nature unfold. It can be very solitary and depressing, but it can also be very calming and self-assuring.
So, you can understand my frustration/culture shock sometimes at the mind-numbing traffic (taxi drivers are the WORST), constant pedestrians, worn down bike paths, hiking trails littered with garbage, sold out movie theaters, crushing mall crowds, people on the streetcorner, people in the grocery store, people in my house, people over for a visit, people in study group, people from Italy (making the total people population NINE in my house. NINE!) people at work, people on the metro, people people people ALL THE TIME.
Sometimes I feel that there are so many people up in my grill with their needs, wants, desires, must-haves, requests, demands and self-centered driving skills that I think I am going to scream and jump into the Potomac.
It's funny because I was known as the 'social butterfly' back home. But here, after a long day of just being with people, I just need a rest.
Whine, over and out.