What hurts more than absence of such places is the behavior a single person is subjected to, dare he/she venture out alone. The only way is it somewhat acceptable to be seen alone is if you are busy on a laptop or your smartphone or maybe busy reading something. That gives an illusion of you waiting for someone or leading such a busy life that you have to come alone for a quick bite. But god forbid if you are seen without any of the above mentioned props. Then the askance glances and pitiful looks you get will be unbearable.
Spotting a girl alone is a bigger risk because all the guys and uncles will automatically assume that she is 'asking for it'. They will leave no stone unturned to make her uncomfortable by approaching her to 'fill up' her loneliness. What people don’t get is that not everyone shopping, eating or watching a movie alone is a pariah. Sometimes it is circumstantial and other times purely by choice.
Once you grow up it is not always easy to find yourself in company of people who would love to accompany you to every mundane task you need to accomplish. Similarly at times you would rather be with yourself than be at the whims and fancies of others. Like when I go shopping I survey the options before shelling out money. I go from shop to shop and sometimes end up going to the first shop I entered. Successful implementation of this formula mandates that I have an understanding partner. But let’s be honest this is not everyone’s cup of tea. Most of the people just like to get in and get out while shopping. So, in order to not invite the wrath of an individual and put up with tantrums I prefer shopping alone. And when I get hungry I stop by to enjoy a meal solo. I also go to movies alone because not all people I hang out with share my taste for movies. SO what? Big Deal!
Being alone, spending time with yourself teaches you so many things. It teaches you to be self-sufficient. To engage your energy with fruitful and creative ventures. It teaches you to observe, observe everything around you - people, nature, little children, cracks in the ceilings, dust on the walls, spider working on its web…. It also makes you appreciate company of people and the fact that nothing and no one should be taken for granted. Having little to no contact with the girls staying in my PG has taught me to be more considerate and attentive towards our bai. It is her I am totally dependent on in the mornings while getting ready. I bombard her with questions asking her opinion about my look of the day. And man is she critical or what! She gives me helpful advice like "keep the dupatta only on one side", "add a bindi" or "that belt is not matching" and once "hair is looking too oily". She maybe not have access to the latest issue of cosmo but for me she is a valuable fashion advisor. Under normal circumstances I would have laughed at the idea of a bai giving me fashion advice but now I have learned my lesson.
Agreed its great being in relationship or having a great bunch of friends to hang out and have fun with. But having experienced both I can tell you that being alone does not have to be a sad or a contemptable experience. Sometimes it is with yourself you can have the maximum fun. Cheers!