Feb. 8th, 2013

bitter_suite: (Carmen Hiding)
This past September I went to the beach (Cape May, NJ) for a few days. I went all by myself. I'm sure I could have found someone to go with me if I'd really wanted company, but I chose to go by myself. Several people expressed surprise when they found out I was traveling alone. Their reactions surprised me a bit. There is nothing wrong with traveling alone. In fact I enjoy it a lot. Traveling with other people can certainly be fun. It's also very helpful to have someone to share the costs of a hotel room and/or the driving if you're traveling by car. However traveling alone definitely has its perks. When you're alone you get to set our own schedule - you can do what you want when you want. The weather might interfere (rain kept me off the beach one day in Cape May), but other than that it's all up to you. You can also make snap decisions without having to consult anyone else. I was driving in Cape May near sunset, and I suddenly decided to turn around and drive to Sunset Beach. It offers a very nice view of the sunset, but I hadn't thought about actually going there at sunset until that moment. However since I was alone it didn't matter.

I think one of the main reasons I don't mind traveling alone is that I'm an introvert. Big groups of people, even if they're my friends, take a lot out of me. I need time to recharge my batteries. Going back to a hotel room by myself in the evening doesn't bother me in the least. The only thing that really used to bother me was going to a restaurant alone. I remember when I studied abroad in France the spring semester of my junior year of college. We had two weeks for spring break, and I spent the first week by my myself in Cannes. I remember seeing a restaurant that looked really good but also being really nervous about going in alone. I finally got over my fear and went in. It still feels weird to go out to eat alone, but I've mostly gotten over it. There's nothing wrong with traveling with other people, but there's nothing wrong with traveling alone either.

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