First of all please don’t call me brave to travel solo. I spent most of my teens in a state of severe depression wishing I could just live life. I did what a lot of people do, I wished for a different life. 10 years on I’ve travelled numerous countries and worked in two of them. I’ve travelled hundreds of thousands of miles on my own. I’ve done the journey to Australia twice! Could 16 year old me have imagined this life? Well she could have dreamed it but didn’t have the strength to make that step. I made a promise to myself that when I recovered, I would live.
It took a catalyst to push me beyond what I could cope with to push me. I’ve solo travelled since I was a small child, I was a dreamer. I used to look up at the sky and dream I was on planes. Anywhere taking me a long way away from here. I’ve never felt like the UK was my home and this was made worse by battling ADHD. So why do I travel?
Number 1 – There is nothing like that childlike wonder of getting off a plane and not knowing where you are going. It’s terrifying but exhilarating to work your way around the metro. You are completely on your own and it’s like a puzzle game. Bonus points if it’s a metro in a new language that you truly don’t understand.
Number 2- You get to meet people you would never get to meet back home. By breakfast time this morning I’d met 4 different girls from different countries. I’d been taught a few words in numerous different languages and I learnt that studying in Denmark is expensive! Life is all about learning and being open to new experiences. There’s no room for not being open to new people in hostels and on the road or you will miss out.
Number 3 – Money and budgeting. When I first left on my big trip I was naive. My first stop was LA where I had an amazing time until the money ran out. I bought what I liked, ate where I wanted too and completely failed to budget any money for the months ahead. This had a massive knock on effect for the next two places. It meant I had to find a job faster and had long reaching consequences for my entire trip. These days I’m a lot wiser, I take the money I need for the day out with me and the rest stays locked away for a rainy day. I now see it as a challenge to see how little money I can exist on and what I can do for it. I had no idea how to budget before this because I’d never needed too.