Once upon a time in late 2010 I stumbled across my first travel blog. I was amazed by how someone can travel all the time! Someone was actually living my dream that I thought was impossible! Someone was not afraid of visiting Afghanistan and Iraq! While I thought the only way I could visit such countries would be working with WHO!
I started browsing that travel blog, and ended up getting addicted to it along with a couple more travel blogs, most of them had travelers that are traveling alone! Solo travelers! Now I had thought before that about traveling alone but I was always afraid of feeling lonely and bored, I thought it is my lack of confidence and my not-very-sociable character that made me think traveling alone was an option, until I saw these people! And then I thought “what the heck…I’ll give it a try!”
I followed my heart and went to walk El Camino de Santiago in 2011, alone! No friends wanted to come along. Well, they all wanted to, but no one actually took any serious steps of joining! And I had made the decision to follow the advice on these travel blogs and just go without being afraid of traveling on my own!
This adventure made me search for more, and when I had the chance to travel to South East Asia the following year, for 6 months, I jumped on it, even though non of my friends were planning to be there with me.
I started with staying in Thailand for a month, where I have met awesome people and made more friends, followed by 5 months in Indonesia where I was immersed in the culture for so long and got to know so many Indonesian people as well as other travelers and interns! It was one of the best experiences I have had in my life so far!
Why am I saying this now?
I have read a line in a post by a fellow blogger lately that said:
“There’s something about being two people out of your own country that forges a bond with a fellow traveler, and the walls come down. I’ve had some of the more honest, open and uplifting talks of my life in hostels with people I met merely moments before.” – link to full post
and I couldn’t agree more! When reading it I remembered some of the conversations I have had on the Camino or with friends in hostels in Thailand, and yes, some of the conversations were so deep, meaningful and helpful, even if they were with people that I have just met!
It is amazing how I feel connected and can talk my mind freely to people that I meet on the road! Sometimes it is even easier to speak my mind and my conscience to these people! My only explanation behind this awkward immediate connection is that I am not afraid that these people might judge me. Not that they do, but even if they did, I know that we might not meet again, and if they don’t like what I am saying, we have just met anyway and we could just part ways – peacefully.
What about you? Do you feel connected to people you meet while traveling? Are you still afraid to travel on your own? Share your experiences with us!