Friday, September 12, 2008

Dealing with Loneliness on the Road


TravelBlogs ran this article about dealing with loneliness on the road:

Dealing With Loneliness on the Road - Part 1

I thought I'd give my 2 cents, since I've traveled solo quite a bit.

When I first had to travel for work, it was to England for a weekend. I was traveling with a coworker that I knew fairly well, so it wasn't very lonely. My second major trip was to Sydney -- alone. I must admit, I had a considerable amount of trepidation about flying for 20 hours and arriving in a city where I knew absolutely nobody! The panic was such that I actually considered telling my company to send someone else or hire local contractors to do the work they needed me to do. The main fear was not about the flight or the distance from home, it was about doing it all alone.

Now I've been back to England by myself several times and took a few solo trips to continental Europe. I've been back to Sydney alone and spent a "lonely" weekend in San Francisco recently. I find the solitude very peaceful. Also being alone provides an unadulterated perspective on everything. At first, I would find myself reaching for a partner to tell them about the cool things I'd see... like an itch on a phantom limb. Over time, I learned to write down notes and started to carry a camera. Now I love traveling alone! There is no substitute for companionship in life, but a notebook, some reading material, and a camera go a long ways toward rectifying a partner-less journey.

- Andy

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