This past week I started getting every duck in the row for the upcoming 18 day solo back packing trip. That includes but not limited to getting time offs approved at work, scheduling time sensitive projects, informing family and friends and such.
I’ve been at the receiving end of myriad of questions. From very familiar “Bro, you’re crazy” to painfully soothing “Why they hell am I not surprised you’re ditching me for memorial day weekend?”. Thats not the end of it. I have lost count of number of times I was asked why I chose to spend my days off in some nondescript part of the world (in that person’s dangerously limited world view) while I could fly TPAC and spend time in Bangalore. Also, demographics asking these questions very diverse. My mom, friends, family members in varied age groups and heck, even the consulate officer at the Bosnian consulate. In their defense, my itinerary has a lot of places that isn’t well documented even on FlyerTalk.
My decision to go solo seemed to arouse a gamut of emotions in the people I meet, from wonder and pity, to admiration and resentment.
I am writing this post to answer all those questions. And my answer is YOLO.
Yes, You Only Live Once.
Unlike Albert Brocolli 90’s super hit movie you do not live to die another day.
I have a pathological fear of rules, routines and regulations. And such I prefer going to places that aren’t heavily infested by tourists. I’d take Papetee over Paris and Luxembourg over London. Don’t get me wrong. I am sure London and Paris are both very charming cities. But, they are not for me. Not right now. May be, probably, when I grow older I’ll fly into Paris and spend a week.
Traveling solo has its own advantages. I can wake up when I feel like, visit as many places I want, eat where I want and what I want, spend more time in places I like. In short, I own my plan. During the 12 hour trans atlantic flight, I can stare out of the window across the horizon where the atlantic meets the arctic and just wonder “what if”… what if Ned Stark survived the beheading?..what if erstwhile USSR did not dissociate? ..what if my fellow Indian brethren didn’t care for Cricket like I do?..what if…
At the end of it, You got to do what you got to do…because YOLO