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She Deals With Loneliness on the Road

I 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


I 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, Israel

I 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!
Selma, Vancouver, Canada

I 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.
Diane, San Francisco, USA

I go shopping...

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.
Alex, Alabama, USA

Tales from women travelling solo...

In 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 Press
ISBN: 1-58005-059-X


Women's words on loneliness...

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

Loneliness 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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