Dining Alone

Old Jun 25th, 2002, 10:14 AM
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I've eaten alone in all kinds of restaurants in Paris and have never really given it a thought. Even Coupole, maybe that was me, ha ha. Except I did have a persistent guy who was a pest there trying to hit on me, it was really annoying because I kept telling him to leave me alone, but he wouldn't. La COupole can have some dragueurs, as they say (guys who try to pick up women), but I don't like it much anyway, so don't go there any more. It isn't strange for a woman to dine alone anywhere in the western industrialized world to me, but I just sort of do whatever I want. I think I may feel a little more uncomfortable at expensive restaurants where everyone is a couple and dressed up, though. I have been treated poorly in one restaurant and I think it's because I was a single female; it wasn't that expensive, so you can't predict behavior. The reason I am not quite comfortable isn't really social mores, but because in those kind of restaurants not many diners, male or female, are alone, so that sets a tone. And it isn't quite as casual so I don't feel comfortable reading a newspaper or book as I would in a cafe, it's not the atmosphere to do that in a fancy restaurant with tablecloths, etc. I prefer casual cafes or bistros where you can people-watch, there are other single diners, the waiters joke around or flirt with you, etc. Aside from the money (and I don't spend a lot on dining), it's just kind of more boring to me. I would only go to an expensive restaurant if it were a place I really wanted to try for a special occasion so the meal was going to be an event, but not for routine meals.

I don't feel the same as mpprh, I don't find a lone meal with a book soul-destroying in the slightest, I enjoy it. As a tip, I have met nice men in cafes or bistros, but not by them asking me to join them for dinner which is a bit much (especially if you haven't even spoken to them so don't even know if you like them), but mainly by sitting next to them in a cafe and casually starting a conversation or making comments on the news, an article in the paper, something around or on the street, etc. (either them or me, it goes both ways). There's a big difference between a guy being an unwanted pushy pest (like that guy at La Coupole who sat down uninvited at my table while I was eating a quiet dinner and reading), and being charming and friendly.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 10:18 AM
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I am just curious, I just don't know why people get upset over eating alone. I am serious, what is wrong with eating alone in public? Is is supposed to mean you are a toubled loser? Unloved? I eat alone in restaurants all the time, and my soul is still intact.
Maybe I shouldn't ask, it will put negative ideas in my head.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 02:09 PM
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Old Jun 25th, 2002, 02:34 PM
John G
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I have traveled all over the world, both for business and pleasure, and I frequently dine alone. I think it is quiet common, especially in the business world.

There will be so many tourists in Paris in July, that you, Sarah, dining alone will hardly be noticed. You will see many, many people eating at outside cafes by themselves, both tourist and Parisian.

Even when I have traveled with others, I have sometimes snuck out and ate by myself just to have an hour of peace and quiet.

If you are feeling self-conscious, eat at a sushi bar, where dining alone will not even be noticed.

Old Jun 25th, 2002, 03:19 PM
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OK, just try and change your own attitude, I am sure most of your fellow diners aren't so interested in whether you eat alone as you think. So change your attitude, make them notice you, look mysterious, glamerous, self sufficient. Let them wonder about a mysterious person like yourself. Life is what you make it after all.
Old Jun 25th, 2002, 08:43 PM
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Well, Lisa, I agree. I never thought of myself as a wonder woman, but after reading all these threads from women (even young ones) who are concerned about eating alone, I must be a wonder.
Did you all just step out of your kitchens? Take off your aprons and get out there it is 2002!
Aren't any of you business women? Grab your courage and put it on your shoulders and eat in a restuarant like a human being!
"Oh Oh, don't look at me avert your eyes, I am eating alone"
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