Me: I think we should have a talk, before we leave, about traits and tendencies we’ve observed in the other person that could potentially cause problems during the trip, so that we can…
Bernd: You can be bossy.
Wow, I thought. He’s embracing this opportunity more than I anticipated. Luckily I know I can be bossy so it wasn’t a total surprise. Bernd doesn’t mean “men are assertive, women are bossy” either. I’m assertive. I can also be bossy.
Here are the criticisms we came up with.
Me: The bossiness. Tendency to panic when plans go awry. Likely to become bitchy and irritable when circumstances are outside of my control. Ducks & weaves in a crowd, in a manner unavailable to a taller companion. Sometimes agrees to a suggestion when facial expression and body language convey the opposite.
Bernd: Softly spoken, sometimes inaudible. Doesn’t walk with purpose in a crowd. Dislikes spontaneity. Doesn’t always mention it when I’m being annoying.
Both: Happy to hang back and let others do the talking (that isn’t going work in a group of 2 introverts). Not overly keen to engage with locals. Dislike bartering.
Hopefully now that these issues are “out there” we’ll be more aware of them as we go, and this marriage might just survive the next 6 months 🙂