Solo travelers aren’t always what they seem.
Last weekend, I attended my daughter in law’s ‘hens day’ and met for the first time, some of her friends while we were sitting in the local Hot Springs. We started talking about travel.
One of her friends was really surprised that last year I traveled solo on a Mediterranean cruise as well as training it from Barcelona to a couple of places in France before returning to Athens for a few days.
She kept on saying that there was no way that she could ever do something like that. She was really impressed. She thought I was so wonderfully confident. Her reaction has been on my mind for the last few days. …… and how wrong her conclusions were.
I explained to her that my daughter, my travel companion for a couple of years (Tasmania via Spirit of Tasmania, and South Pacific Ocean on the Carnival Spirit) was unavailable as an adventure bud for a little while, due to her and husband becoming parents last February.
A couple of months before my grandson was born, my daughter and I were having one of those lighthearted chats that generally lead nowhere. I was saying that if I was going to go on a cruise by myself, I would want it to be in a region where there were lots of ports very close together rather than three days sailing out of Sydney before I got anywhere.
Before I knew it, I was booked on Carnival Cruise’s newest ship, the Vista. The ship left Piraeus (Athens, Greece) and spent the next week and a half making it’s way to Barcelona, Spain I also booked return flights to Athens, and start planning a train trip from Barcelona to Nice over a few days before flying to Athens for another couple of days.
I spent the next ten months wondering what I was thinking. I get anxiety attacks, am an over-thinker and worry like there is no tomorrow.
I went, I not only survived, I astounded myself. I almost feel like Walter Mitty, in that I finally did something interesting in my life.
I created a travel blog, mainly for myself, but it also enabled any of my friends and family who were interested to see what I was up to. I believe my mother followed my blogs religiously so I matched up the words and photos in a photo book for Christmas. I ordered an extra one for me, because I still couldn’t believe that I did it (and I still look at it every now and then).
About six weeks after I got home, I got a random email (I can’t even remember where it came from) telling me about a MSC cruise that included Casablanca, Morocco.
Yep, I am doing it all again. This time flying return to Rome and spending most of my time on land travelling solo in Italy and I have been learning Italian for the past nine months.
…. And, I still have anxiety attacks, over-think and worry like there is no tomorrow.