Sometimes living in a foreign location is different, really, really different – and confusing. The grocery store doesn’t stock items you consider essential like mint and coriander or – gasp! – bacon. You can’t wear the clothes you want to because a tennis skirt will cause trucks to honk and stop in the middle of the street. Mosques blare the call to prayer at all times of the day and night. You can’t step into the street without fearing for your life. The list goes on and on …
But despite how strange living in a foreign country can seem at times, there are some human behaviors, which are always the same no matter where you live. Case in point: the gym. No matter where in the world I’ve gone to exercise at a fitness club, the same patterns are visible.
1. There are never (NEVER!) enough cross-trainers. Seriously, fitness club owners, what is the problem here? Can you not see that cross-trainers are the most popular piece of aerobic equipment and always busy? What would it take for you to buy a few more?
2. A group of people who are at the gym to socialize instead of work out. Often, they stand in your way or hog machines they aren’t using anyway. I have no problem with socializing but get away from my machine!
3. At least one very fit man who use the gym as a pick-up scene. He’ll prance around like a peacock strutting his stuff. I must admit, I do enjoy the show. You can’t blame me – the cross-trainer can get really boring.
4. A strange man or woman. He’s there nearly every time you are in the gym. He might dress differently or act a bit off. He keeps to himself and doesn’t talk to anyone – especially not the social group buzzing around him the entire time. You’re not even sure he speaks the same language as you do. For some reason, you’re fascinated with his story. What is his story? (If you’re a writer, you just make one up.)
5. Without fail, you will see at least one, but more likely two, women who come to the fitness with full make-up on and do not sweat. They are not here to work out. They’re here to check out the prancing peacocks. Ooooh, I hope he notices me. *Gags*
The clothes people wear and the color of their skin may vary, but on the inside, we are all human and human nature will prevail. And now? I’m off to the gym. Happy Friday!