Knowing I have another annoying day lined up with yet more arguments I start the day with the gym. This I am finding is a real boon. I don’t particularly like the gym, but I know mentally it keeps me a lot calmer when under pressure.
In the evening we go out to the local pub with our new neighbours to welcome them to the area. Since moving to London, I have made a real effort to get to know our neighbours and to be the typical non-Londoner – that means I do talk and smile and say “Hello” and I do invite you out and I do actually make an effort to be friends. My brother, who has lived in the capital since being a student, finds my behaviour weird.
I take great pride in my weird behaviour and every day make a concerted effort to say “Hello” to least one stranger on the street. Most of the time they reply, but at the very minimum they smile, or nod something in acknowledgement.
Does it feel weird? Yes, sometimes. Sometimes, even I, want to go about my business and not have to connect with anyone, but I don’t know if that’s a good way to live. We all need other people and I think it’s good to try and connect – even in a small acknowledgement of somebody else’s existence. Saying “Hello” or sharing a smile does this.