Self-Cation Solo Style
A night out on my birthday. I spent it with 6 others. One I just met on my Women Over Fifty Traveling Solo Facebook Group. Her name was Abbey, from Austrailia
SOLO: I am and my blog is geared towards the older solo female traveler. Although not always the case, I suspect that a high number are single for a variety of reasons. Those that are married often travel solo because the spouse isn't willing/able to travel. Hence the SOLO.
TIME is slowly being reclaimed in life. Maybe we aren't working any more or have cut down hours. If not yet, there are the whispers of adventure starting to float around that brain, a brain that feels more like "yours" again every single day. We find ourselves empty nesters on a lot of levels. Spaces in life are created by divorce, children leaving home or the passing of a loved spouse or significant other.
MOTIVATION: Some of us decide this is the time to reclaim the dreams of the girl you were. The girl that could not conceive how little dreams or self would matter while trying to be and stay married, raise a few kids, build a career and eek out enough little get-aways to be happy. Suddenly it occurs to you that now is the time to shake some shit up and we end up here, on TRAVEL Blogs and Facebook pages created for us.
So here we are all grown up, standing still with ourselves. We are ready to look at solo travel. We have more time and we desire to be bold. We look at travel books, think of Paris, Bali, NYC, Barcelona, London...ready to run but to where? And right there is where I want to ask you to hit pause. Consider letting go of the highlights, 4 countries, 10 cities, three week run of the tourist tour.
The double eagle of Albania A Communist era bunker A lunch I cooked for myself
Instead consider going on a SELF-CATION. Build a space to stand still with yourself. I ask you to make a plan to un-tether yourself from the touristy travel. The thing you might find is yourself! I want to encourage you to look at a slightly more off the beaten path plan. For me it was Albania.
Plan your own version of Summer Camp. Decide to perfect making bread, knit a scarf with local yarn, or read some everyday. Take yoga classes, walk daily, meditate, or listen to your favorite music. Do a deep dive on topics that interest you. Visit the local market (....OMG equal to a museum in my mind), find the best local coffee shop, visit restaurants and converse in your head as if you were a critic writing a review. This will make you take notice of and remember the details of the meal. Go shopping in the local resale shop. Visit the local parks. Take part in local events. Look for a local expat group for social opportunities. JUST do what you want to do but try, oh try to do it more like you live there. Have a daily date with sunrise or sunset, take a picture, make them in a book when you get home. Take naps. Don't be afraid to totally stay "home' some days and never get out of your jammies. I know that is VACATION blasphemy...but this is a SELF-CATION.
We take time out to NAP! Then we have the coffee ... and maybe another nap!
Talk to your soul. Remember who you were/are. It is just for a few weeks, although I do recommend a month at least. A well chosen spot can be beautiful, cheap and wonderful. A great spot is located where with minimal expense you can plan on one or two short little mini-trips to a special highlight place. For me in Albania it is a 30 min, $20 ferry ride to the beautiful island of Corfu Greece. Totally different world.
Dawn Day Night
Promise you will at least explore the road less traveled and spend some time with yourself.