“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” - Saint Augustine
It was the late August summer of 2019. I was embarking on a once in a lifetime opportunity to backpack through parts of central and eastern Europe. At this point, I was leaving Budapest by bus and on my way to a small city called Bratislava in Slovakia since it was on the way to Prague in Czech Republic. Bratislava was only an hour in a half drive from Budapest so I knew it wouldn't be a long excursion. I dozed off for a bit rather passively. When I woke up, I noticed we were close to a bus terminal being that the rural lands off the interstate were behind us. However, I looked around from my seat and there were clearly less people on the bus. Looking at the time, it had been three hours since I boarded the bus. It was then that the driver announced, “We’ll be pulling into Vienna’s station in about five minutes.” To my surprise, I slept long enough to miss my stop and wind up back in Vienna, Austria, where I had stopped a week prior but had no plans on returning. I walked up to the driver and explained my story, which he could only chuckle a bit and then advise me to get off at the next stop and wait for a bus leaving for Bratislava. I was taken aback, but there wasn’t much I could do but heed his advice so I went back to my seat.
I've always been really good at running away. I hate staying in one place for too long. I get super bored with where I live or how I'm living, so I have the urge to change things, but instead of rearranging my living room I just up and move to an entirely new place. I get this from my mom because we moved every year to a new house. We never stayed in one place more than a year and I have no idea why, but because of this I tend to do the same thing with my own life.
" If you think about it, thinking about nothing is also thinking about something so now don't think about it. "
Well, we have to start from the beginning, which is the day I left Washington State on February 22, 2017. I was in such disbelief when I packed my backpack and was on the way heading to the airport. It was such a surreal feeling knowing this is everything you have ever wanted, but terrified of the unknown. So after going through security and boarding the plane, I sat down and realized there was no one else on this plane. I think I won the lottery that day the whole cabin was empty. I can honestly say this was the best flight I have ever had in my life. I got to sleep laying down over all three chairs, stretching in the middle of the aisle, getting all the attention from the amazing flight attendants.
I LEFT HOME TO LOOK FOR ME
One of my New Years’ resolutions was to travel more and take more pictures. Fate must have heard because soon after the new year, I was on a plane to Paris! Just before I had booked the flight, I was turned down by what seemed like a dream job. During the application process, I was warned ahead of time that I would be subject to a pay cut if I were to be offered the position. Because of this, the money I had saved up in the event that I got the job (and the pay cut that came with it) made purchasing the ticket possible; and with perfect timing, I might add. If that wasn’t enough, the job I had at the time also gave me a pay raise that made me feel less guilty about my impulsive purchase. Everything seemed like perfect timing. I was nowhere near ready, but my camera was charged and I was excited to explore.
That being said, do you have a destination in mind for your self-discovery trip? This article highlights 7 of the most fun places to visit solo.
In the summer of 2012, at the age of eleven, I flew to Czech Republic to stay one month with my grandparents. As much as my mother would have wanted to come along with me, she had to stay back home with my sisters who were too young for such a long journey to a foreign country.
It was late-September of 2019, I had this desire to do an overnight hike at a location I had only since dreamt of visiting. It was a place that continued to avoid me, due to poor weather and inconsistent planning on my part. I knew of many people who had made the trek up this mountain out in the middle of nowhere. It was a place I had only ever experienced through the screen of my cellular device, as I looked upon the images of photographers who had been to it. I wanted to go, so very badly. But the weather was always poor on the weekends, and that was the only time that my fellow hiking friends could take the time off from work to go hiking. Therefore, the only option was for me to go hiking alone in the middle of the week.