One of the first questions people ask me about my upcoming 5-month round-the-world adventure is who I am going with.
When I tell them I am not going with anyone, they usually look horrified. “So you’re going be ALONE the whole five months?!?”
I don’t even know to respond to this.
For one thing, when I think of myself being alone, I think of not seeing or speaking to another human being. Have you ever tried to go five months without seeing anyone?
It’s pretty much impossible to go five hours without seeing someone. Eventually, you need to eat. So you leave your room. And then BAM … people. People everywhere.
Ok, so I know I am being difficult. When people say alone, they don’t usually mean “no one else is around.”
But what do they mean?
I think some people think it counts as being “alone” when you’re making decisions on your own. And yes, that is really scary for me, having been taught to always consider other peoples’ feelings first. What do I actually want to do when no one else is watching? Scary. Exciting. Confusing.
Some come right out and say that it’s about me leaving my boyfriend at home. This one definitely makes no sense to me. I mean, I am going to miss him a lot. But I am not necessarily “alone” when he is not by my side. But I may get lonely, especially when something is not going my way.
So that’s the other thing that makes this question hard. My original plan did not involve me spending so much time “alone.”
I had a change in an important relationship to me, which produced a lot of mopey Instagram posts and two months of depressed Jes. The details are not to be dissected on the Internet.
But safe to say, things have already not gone my way. And I haven’t even left yet.
When I was looking at a rapidly approaching departure date and no plans, I could have pulled the plug. But instead, I cried a lot. Then I cried some more. And then I just and bought a plane ticket. I guess I’ll be seeing what this world has to offer little old solo me.