Perhaps my favorite travel myth is the one that states a women cannot travel the world alone. I’ve crushed this myth many times, and I know scores of women that have helped me demolish it. Still, I know just as many women that won’t go to the mall alone. Those same women point at me whenever I announce another trip and tell me, “Be careful!” Truth is, I kind of resent that advice. Because if I didn’t figure out how to “be careful” on my own, I wouldn’t be able to do what I do. The other thing I resent is when people assume that just because I travel alone it must mean that a) there’s something wrong with me, (i.e., I “have no friends,”) or b) I have a man in every city waiting for my favors.
First, I have traveled with several people over the years. My beloved mom was my companion for twenty of them. Since she passed, travel companions, both male and female, have come and gone. None of them have been as compatible as Mom, and I’ve always returned to solo traveling because I like it better that way. There’s nothing worse than being left behind in an airport by people who you’re supposed to be traveling with. Been there, done that. Why bother? May as well just go alone if I’m going to be alone, anyway!
About having a man in every city waiting for me. Well, let’s just say that I know women who travel to meet men, and I don’t know how they don’t end up in really big trouble. It’s never been my priority. I don’t think it’s a safe gamble when you’re in a place where you don’t know anyone. Which isn’t to say that I haven’t met men of interest in places I’ve traveled. But it is to say that I’ve never, not even once, followed through on that interest in any way but conversation and exchanging contact information.
The name of the game for a woman traveling alone is common sense and attitude. Peace to my fellow ladies traveling the globe solo.