I just got back from seeing an incredible play called Midsummer and I went alone.
The first time I ventured out alone in one of my cultural excursions (as my pretentious alter-ego would call it) it was at an art gallery. Then I started going to movies by myself, then to plays, writer's festivals, reading alone at coffee shops and so on. I have to admit at first it was kind of weird but then I just got used to it and now I actually prefer going to these things by myself.
I like not having to worry about scheduling and then having that constant worry during the thing whether or not the other person is enjoying themselves. Plus, I get to choose when to go, where to sit and what to watch. Sometimes my friends (or mum) would insist on seeing the Katherine Heigl romcom when all I want to watch is the three hour french film. I'm not a very convincing person either (after a couple of minutes you'll get used to the subtitles you won't even know it's there, trust me).
I made the mistake of introducing arthouse cinema to my friends by bringing them to a screening of a Michael Haneke film. Let's just say I don't think they trust my film choices anymore. I loved the film though. They, on the other hand, were traumatised by it.
I draw a line though. If it's a horror, or a big popcorn blockbuster I always go with others. Some things are still more enjoyable when you're with other people. I can't imagine seeing Paranormal Activity by myself. Who would I hold on to when I get frightened? Don't laugh. Then there are films like My Sister's Keeper in which I know I'm going to cry. And I did. And not just a single tear kind of cry or a mere sniffle, but the full waterworks. Bawling your eyes out alone in a movie theatre is just sad, and not in a good way. Plus, it's hilarious talking about it afterwards. I've never been to a concert or a music festival by myself primarily because I get drunk going to these things and I can't get wasted without my friends. It's just not fun.
Apart from that I much prefer going alone. If it's arts-fartsy, foreign, subtitled or if it's something I know none of the people I know are going to be interested in, I'm definitely just booking for one. It's actually quite fun and liberating and you end up meeting and chatting with random strangers which I normally wouldn't do if I was with other people. As much as I love my friends and family sometimes you just gotta do things solo. Try it if you haven't already.
Image edited. Original from here.