In my wanderings around the city, I have noticed that people are louder than they used to be. Conversations used to be quiet enough to be heard only by the conversationalists and probably not anyone else. Now it seems that conversations are loud enough to be heard by anyone within hailing distance.
Yesterday some young women were sunbathing by a pool and I could hear them talking from a block away. I could hear their laughter two blocks away.
Today I was in a small taqueria having a breakfast burrito (which was delicious, by the way) and a small family filled the whole place with sound. They purposefully made their small child squeal multiple times and laughed loudly when he did.
This afternoon, I stopped to get a cold drink and a man and his son were debating, loudly enough for everyone in the café to hear, whether or not they had been sold the cookie with single or double chocolate chips. They also had a really cool conversation about the locations of various South American countries, which impressed me, but that’s beside the point.
It’s not that loudness is rude, exactly, or that I’m a curmudgeon—at least, I don’t think I am—but I just get annoyed when other people’s chit-chat interrupts my self-talk.
Maybe I’ve been living alone too long.