There are times in your life when you just feel the need to run away and discover the world and how you it relates to your life. And, I suppose I’ve run for the past few years now, because I’ve certainly “seen the world, been to many places.” Along the way I’ve “made lots of friends, many different races,” but I still feel as though there is so much more to learn and the benefits of leaving home outweigh the discomforts of life on the road.
I’ve always been independent and had a willful spirit despite, perhaps, not being the most outspoken and attention-seeking person around. I’m also pretty happy being alone. I’m not someone who needs a ton of people around, and, in fact, crowds probably annoy me more than energize me. I prefer observing and listening to things going on around me and not contributing to the dialogue. I suppose I’m an introvert in that way.
But, over the years I’ve met couples who travel together and find the dynamics between them interesting fodder to contemplate. Traveling with a partner definitely tests the relationship and the people. You discover things you never really knew about the other person, even when you’ve spent oodles of time together before traveling. Backpacking can definitely make or break your relationship, and I think it’s a really good way to decide if your partner is capable of being your forever love or if he or she is more of a temporary friend.
I’ve also seen many relationships blossom between travelers. Of course, there are those fleeting one-night stands that, to be honest, seem to happen loads and loads. But, miraculously, there are couples who meet while traveling who somehow string together the days, weeks and months and survive the journey even when the end of the road is near.
Meeting a beau while making a run away from reality presents a dilemma for me, and I’m unsure how I’d react to it should it happen. On one hand, my goal is to see and experience new cultures and learn about people, which in turn will help me learn about myself. It’s a quest for understanding and knowledge that I think is best done, for the most part, solo. Without solitude, it’s difficult to really reflect on your thoughts and feelings. You don’t form your own opinions because you’re susceptible to those of others.
However, sharing an experience like this with another person can also be beneficial. Intimate dialogue between two like-minded people about self-discovery, life-goal setting and more can solidify your idea of self when you have a foreign experience together. Both people are out of their comfort zones of daily routine and can discuss the likenesses and differences between cultures and attitudes. This may lead to developing a new attitude for approaching life.
I suppose the true test will come if a similar situation presents itself to me, but until then, rest assured dear readers. This gal will continue living life and loving it . . . solo. I left home alone and will probably return alone . . . and I’m totally cool with that.
What do you think about traveling by yourself versus with a partner? Have you ever sustained a holiday romance after your vacation ended?