I had a similar thing happen to me on a HAL cruise. I usually travel solo as I don't have any friends who like to cruise. I always request a large table. On this occasion I was seated at a table for 10 and the first night I was the only one there. Talk about feeling conspicuous. The next night two other people came and told me they would be back the next day. The third day, two different people came, the other two didn't. So I just gave up and ate in the buffet. I was still a newbie at cruising and didn't realize you could request a table change.
Paul, as far as your suggestion regarding NCL. I hope that it will be good. I'm booked on the Epic in October. However I have heard a lot of bad things about NCL and solo cruisers regarding how they are treated at dinner. Many have said they are seated at the worst tables and often forgotten.
One lady, in the review I read, mentioned she was seated in the dining room, made her selection from the menu. While she waited to place her order, she started reading the book she had with her. After a while she realized the waitress seemed to have forgotten her. So she called her over and the waitress told her she thought she had come there to read. Now who goes to a dining room just to read?
That is just one of the bad reviews I've read regarding NCL and solo diners.
I hope that with the single rooms on the Epic that their dining room staff will deal better with solo travellers or people who come to the dining venue alone because their travelling companion(s) want to eat elsewhere or at a different time.