Phew long time, no blog! Fair warning though, I just spent three weeks in the Middle East and Africa so there’s about to be a flash flood of content. Before diving into that though, I wanted to get real for a second.
This trip wasn’t my first time traveling alone. My first encounter with solo-travel was when I was 19 and created this blog (if you search far enough back you’ll find some cringy beginners blogging), but a bit of time has passed since I’ve stepped off a plane alone in another country. Practically any travel blogger will encourage you to take this lonesome leap and I agree! There’s no better way to learn about yourself and what you are capable of. Traveling in solitary puts a lot of weight on your flexibility, ability to trust, patience and creativity, but this most recent trip targeted my emotions.
Emotions are not my thing. I specialize in suppressing or pushing them away– I basically ran away from my boyfriend after saying “see ya later” at SFO– but emotions flooded in over this solo-trip. Perhaps it was because I was alone and meeting up with a group of strangers or just that I’ve grown up and grown too comfortable with my people and places in California, but I was on the verge of tears for the first few days.
The fear of not belonging, homesickness, excitement for the new and unknown, a longing to see those who know me best or even to hear their voice, you name it, that emotion bombarded me.
But, they say if you love something then set it free, and while that’s a bit dramatic and I didn’t set anything free I did wander away from reality for a while, coming back with a renewed passion for the things, people and places I appreciate at home.
Believe me, I second guess my decisions the whole flight to my destination, but the point I’m trying to get across is through all the doubt and hesitation I faced once on my trip, I came home with a renewed sense of courage and an understanding for why I travel; to gain familiarity with places both away and at home.
And to round things out, I found myself tearing up as I said goodbye to the new friends I had made on my trip when it came time to fly home, much like my reaction when leaving SFO just three weeks prior. Looks like I’m becoming a softie!