Many people associate solo travel with loneliness, but just like life, you can choose how lonely you want the road to be. Our emotions tend to be a reflection of the thoughts in our mind.
Raised in a middle-class Indian family, I am always expected to do things which are mainstream-pursue an engineering degree, get a job, earn money and live a “life of bliss”. I always failed at exploring places by myself, experimenting things and..knowing myself. The passion for standing out from the crowd, stepping out of my comfort zone, testing my boundaries, experimenting and failing, learning from my failures, letting my dreams fly, without anyone who had known me in my regular life kept increasing ever since I understood that the more I lived, the more I knew how much I haven’t lived.
This urge to travel grew out of an empty feeling, constantly torn between wanting to live life to the fullest in each moment and making decisions that might assure a life of fewer uncertainties in the long run. This callto unleash myself became the sole purpose of my existence. “How else can you feel complete freedom – to shed the baggage of everyday life, make your own choices, and even simply be the person you always wanted to be?”
I always wanted to experience life different from mine, destroy the million fragments of my soul living paradoxical lives and revel in my own company and feel utterly free in my mind and soul. But when I see my peers taking a road often travelled, different from the road of aspirations, dreams I’ve chosen, I start questioning my own wanderlust. I wonder whether travelcan offer me what I am craving for, transformme into a better person, whether the road givesme a deeper understanding of the world, whether all those fleeting interactions with the society leaving a long-lasting impact on my mind turn out to be real.
Sometimes the idea of being somewhere remote by myself, without a known face or language sends a shiver down my spine. My mind inexplicably conjures up worst case scenarios and I withdraw into my little shell of what the hell am I doing. The freedom and thrill offered by solo traveling are often interspersed with moments of anxiety, nervousness and fear imbibed within, from the conversations I have with the paradoxical me.
That’s when I focus on the romance of solitude; I imagine myself blissfully gazing at the snowcapped mountain peaks without any fear of crossing the deadline, without the fear of proving myself to others. I attain inner peace and feel like a 2 year old when I imagine swapping life stories with a stranger whose life maybe very different from mine, whose culture may be alien to me, but our souls singing the same tune.
I want to overcome the feeling of onism, sail away from the safe harbour DREAM, EXPLORE AND DISCOVER.