As a young girl, I’ve always had an interest in travel. I remember being glued to the travel channel as kid watching Anthony Bourdain and Samantha Brown. Just like probably everyone else in this world, I want to experience a different country or even state before I take my last breath.
I loved reading stories of back-packers exploring the great wall of China or mount Kilimanjaro. I loved hearing stories of finding friends in different cities. I was inspired by these stories. I knew I wanted to travel.
However, I never realized how hard it was to do solo-travel until college. My mother often forbade to travel by myself unless I’m accompanied by some friends, my sisters or even a man. She typically wants me to wait until I get a boyfriend or even a husband before I start traveling which is somewhat gross. However, I like doing things alone sometimes.
Every time I tried to do something solo like attend a concert or attend it was always interrupted by my mother trying to get someone to go with me last minute. I understand most of that is a result of her own unresolved trauma.
In the past, when I use to plan day trips and adventures with my friends, they always feel through. I decided that I can’t wait for people and that I actually enjoy my time alone since I’ve been a loner pretty much all my life. In June of 2021, My first solo-trip was to a city known for it’s arts, culture, unique history and… a 60% crime rate, I went to New Orleans. I booked my hotel room back in March, booked my flight in April and had the time of my life. However, being an adult at home with not-so-accepting parents was my only obstacle. They want you to be an adult but will still limit you regardless of if you have college degree or not, regardless of if you’re over 21, and regardless of if you do the household chores. I didn’t tell my parents until the day before my flight that I was going to New Orleans and will be gone for the week. You can bet there was a little conflict but they knew there wasn’t anything stopping me from going. I am an adult, I made my own money to go on this trip, My bags were packed, I was vaccinated, and I was ready to go.
Solo-female travel isn’t anything new. However, with the fears of human-trafficking, kidnapping, and even murder. Most women are discouraged from traveling solo. We are advised to have someone be our companions when taking trips to these destinations in fear that we may end up on the missing persons database or being sex-slaves to a drug cartel. While these things are real-life dangers, we shouldn’t let that stop us from achieving what we want to do with our lives.
With Everything in Life, you have to be careful with every situation you face. I was tired of waiting around and told that I’m too young to do these things. I was tired of having to wait on a man to live my best life. I know I am more than capable of traveling by myself.
What traveling solo taught me is that shouldn’t be afraid of what is out there. And there is danger on every corner but you can’t stop yourself from living your dream life because of that. It taught me strength because I use to be so shy, nice and withdrawn. It gave me confidence I never knew I had. And helped me form bonds with people I could’ve never met if I had just stayed waiting for someone.