23 Sept 2015, Govindghat, Chamoli Dist., Uttarakhand, INDIA.
First night stay while going to the Valley of flowers.
An abstract from my travel journal.
I’ll be honest, solo traveling needs a lot of doing to master it. It is the 3rd time I am solo traveling and I am feeling the same discomfort like I felt the first time I solo-traveled. Fear of unknown, being worrisome of how it will be/can be, not living in the moment etc. After all this time I felt I have mastered the art of comfortable solo traveling, you know the one which is feels very regular but the thing is it takes time. Also, I believe the first day is generally like that, you are new to the environment and people, secondly if you choose a place like VOF in late September, it is going to be a bit empty here. Lastly, with all the travel your mind needs to relax. So, what I am doing to relax my mind? Well, I am writing. It is helping me release the tension, there is good music in the background (please carry good stock of music) and lastly you need to accept what’s happening to you and believe what will happen it will be for the best and you will find a way out. The first day is generally spent in uneasiness. One more reason is that there is no network in my mobile so maybe that’s bothering me more. :P. After writing all this I suddenly feel more relaxed, I am here to enjoy and live an experience very few get a chance to live.
Recently I was approached by a 19 year old student who was inspired by my blog on solo-traveling and wanted some tips. I was really happy that the blog was serving its purpose and inspiring more and more people for solo-traveling. It’s a very liberating experience and once should definitely experience it once in order to look into their lives closely. 🙂
“I meet a lot of youngsters of your age traveling alone.
Traveling the world is really ambitious even I want to do so but the thing about traveling the world is you need to start by traveling to the next city or next hill station to you or a next tourist destination and when traveling becomes a habit slowly you find you own ways to travel the world.”
Here are some tips for end for anyone who is looking to go for a solo travel.
1) You don’t need to be independent to travel alone. Infact to be independent you need to travel alone.
2) If you are living with your parents right now find a way to convince them to start with a small destination which is not more than 500–600 kms apart so that they feel safe about you.
3) Use Stay With Locals & Make Travel Friends to find some home stays.
4) Stay in Temples/ Dharamshala (Reasonable living stays provided by a particular regional community) if you have to. To save money. I learned this after my 3 solo travels. My first solo travel costed me around INR10–12K, I was stupid and my last solo travel costed me around INR 5K and it was almost of the same time duration. We are travelers, bag-packers we need to find ways to save money.
5) Don’t go for a big solo travel as of now. 2–3 nights should be fine. Don’t lie to your parents/family/friends.
6) Research about the destination well enough on Quora and google if it’s an unknown destination.
7) Carry a pen and a personal journal.
8) Don’t be in a rush to do things when you travel solo. Just sit in some cafe and enjoy the view.
9) No bookings are required just to go there and explore and find the place to stay, you will be fine. Trust your luck. 🙂
10) Lastly, donate some amount. God is helping you in some way, have gratitude and do more than just thanks for anyone who helps you in your travel expedition. 🙂
Please reach me if you need any help or suggestion in solo-traveling, or if you want me to showcase your solo traveling story on my blog/you-tube channel.
Let me tell you a small story,
In June of 2015, I was solo traveling to Rishikesh. Where I met Mathur, he was from Kolkata. He was a servant cum manager of this popular cafe called The Beatles cafe. As I was alone obviously it always feels good to talk to any person. I started talking to Mathur casually because I spent around 4-5 hours in the cafe that day, turns out Mathur was an athlete, 10th Pass, got supplementary in 12th, wanted to do, Hotel Management somehow could not then wanted to join the Police force but didn’t have the money for admission so he started with being a waiter. As times went by he met the owner of The Beatles Cafe in Kolkata, started working for him and he gave him an offer to come to Rishikesh for their new venture i.e. The Beatles cafe.
When I asked they give him 7000/- rupees and takes care of his food and accommodation.
So, what is so exciting about this?
When Mathur was telling me his story for almost half an hour, there was a sparkle in his eyes, a small smile, these are the key points he mentioned in our conversation
1) I never thought I would go this far in life. I am very thankful to God and my boss.
2) I learn so many things every day. I was not good in English, but talking to Foreigners had helped me.
3) I live in such a peaceful location, in front of Ganges that every morning is bliss.
4) They give me good money, that’s only 7000 we are talking about.
5) I love my work.
Mathur was happy. In 7000 rupees I could see the sparkle, the happiness, the feeling of being content, looking forward for everyday with an excitement. That was present in Mathur and not in me and I earn quite more than Mathur. So yes, Fuck with the money, I am happy being Mathur if given a chance with that happiness.