Deals With Loneliness on the Road
get reacquainted with myself...
When I'm traveling
alone I enjoy the freedom to go where I want and when I want but
(I admit) I often do get lonely. When I want to share some special
place or some laughs I just reach out to other single ladies in
public places -- like a restaurant or hotel lounge, or touristy
area. If I pay attention to their body language and I notice them
looking around or looking rather alone themselves, I say "Hi".
I wait to see what response I get. If it's a smile and a little
sigh of relief, I introduce myself and tell them I'm travelling
alone and I start up a conversation telling them why I'm there
and ask something, about them. It's easy in an airport because
I always start off by asking where someone is coming from or going
to. In a tourist area, I can always comment on the area, "Isn't
this beautiful" or "amazing".
Also, I go to specialty
stores of my interest at a slow time of day and strike up a conversation
with the clerk or owner. I can usually make connections because
they live there. Or they can suggest local places of interest
to visit, shop or eat. Often, that little personal connection
will drive away the loneliness for a while. Being surrounded by
lots of people most of the time, I use travelling alone as a special
time for me to have with myself --to really hear myself think
and feel. Often, (we) women are hearing and feeling for everyone
around us and we don't hear what we think and are strangers to
our own feelings. When you travel alone, you can really get re-re-acquainted
with yourself! Here's to great adventures and new acquaintances
for all JourneyWomen around the world.
Brenda, Las Vegas, USA
talk to people...
I find that the best
cure for loneliness is also the most rewarding aspect of travelling
solo -- talking to people! Aside from that, I always carry around
a small album filled with photos of family and friends as well as
my hometown landmarks like Mount Royal and snow. It's also fun to
share these with new friends to show them where I come from.
Melanie, Montreal, Canada & Jerusalem,
dine at home...
I spent a month travelling
Northern Italy on my own and I found an alternate to dining surrounded
by couples...it's not unique but as I'm an early riser, I spent
the better part of daylight absorbed in my priority list of places
to visit...after siesta I went to the local grocery store and stocked
up on prosciutto, wonderful bread, fruit, cheese, mineral water
and had a great dinner in my hotel room...I travel with a batik
wrap that doubles as a tablecloth, small candle,...journal my activities
from the day, do some yoga and stretching and listen to my favourite
relaxation tapes that are always with me. By the time I did my "dinner"
ritual there was usually time to nip out for a stroll or sit at
an outdoor cafe sipping a cappuccino and with early mornings it
was quite good to get an early night's sleep! As I said not very
unique but this "ritual" worked for me!
travel with my computer and camera...
I'm the type of Journeywoman
who tends to get very absorbed in my surroundings and generally
I don't feel lonely when I travel alone. (I have to confess I rather
like it!). That said, I keep connected with friends and family by
always taking my laptop computer. I send frequent emails and include
digital pictures from that day. This is cheaper and generally more
hassle free than using the phone, plus I don't have to worry about
time differences. My friends and relatives really love getting digital
pictures from the road.
San Francisco, USA
When I travel, if
I get too lonely and I'm missing my family and boyfriend I go out
on a shopping spree. I choose only small things that I can mail
to my favorite people back home. This small exercise chases away
my travel blues and I'm ready to begin fresh the next day. My boyfriend
told me that this is a win-win situation for him. He's happy that
I miss him and he's also happy to receive his presents.
from women travelling solo...
A Woman Alone, Travel Tales From Around the Globe
29 women answer the question: Why go solo? This collection,
featuring the true-adventure stories of women travelling in
every corner of the globe, tackles the myriad obstacles and
successes of solo travel with honesty, warmth and humor. If
you've always wondered what it would be like to go solo -- or
if you're already packing your bags -- these essays will feed
your wonderlust and inspire your travel dreams.
Edited by: Faith Conlon, Ingrid Emerick &
Christina Henry de Tessan Published by: Seal
There have been weeks when no one
calls me by name.
Leah Goldberg, Nameless Journeys, 1976
The loneliness persisted like incessant rain.
Ann Allen Shockley, Spring Into Autumn, 1980
Loneliness is the poverty of self;
solitude is the richness of self.
May Sarton, Mrs. Stevens Hears the Mermaids Singing,1965
is black coffee and late-night television;
solitude is herb tea and soft music.
Pearl Cleage, In My Solitude, 1993
Women especially are social beings, who are not content with
just husband and family, but must have a community, a group, an
exchange with others. A child is not enough. A husband and children,
no matter how busy one may be kept by them, are not enough.Young
and old, even in the busiest years of our lives, we women especially
are victims of the long loneliness.
Dorothy Day, The Long Loneliness, 1952
Here's another article on the same theme.Lonely? Reach out or go Shopping
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