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Will anyone here admit they have wouldn't want to travel alone or had a rotten time traveling alone?

Will anyone here admit they have wouldn't want to travel alone or had a rotten time traveling alone?

Jun 8th, 2001, 04:41 PM
  #21  
Jim Rosenberg
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Traveling alone means you never have to admit you had a rotten time! Seriously, though, it is like comparing apples to oranges. I agree with those who point out that a bad travel companion would be far worse than traveling alone. Most often, I travel with family or friends, but I've also traveled across the U.S., Canada and Europe on a solo basis. It's a great way to clear your head and to have a very different, introspective experience. It's very flexible, since there is no pressure or compromising involved. I get better pictures by myself. The day-to-day interactions with strangers take on more significance. It's cheaper to plan for one (if you are the one who generally pays for the entourage, which I am). Some people should probably never travel alone because they would hate it. For myself, I relish those opportunities and I plan them for precisely the special quality that traveling alone provides for me.
 
Jun 8th, 2001, 04:41 PM
  #22  
Jody
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well said CAPO, I've been married 40 years and I still light up when david comes home. It is really lovely to reach out and touch the one you love when you are sharing a new experience. we don't need to talk or have otheres around, just knowing they are there is enough. I have no qualms about traveling or eating or anything else alone but it is more fun to share it with a person who likes to do also. I have friends whose husbands won't or don't want to travel and they sit at home and pine about the places they could go. I think I'd get up and go but fortunately I have a companion who is ready to go as long as I make the arrangements.
 
Jun 8th, 2001, 05:00 PM
  #23  
nancy
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Since I did not marry until my early 30's, I had some years between my "commune years" and my marriage to live alone.
I found I really enjoyed it.
But, there were times it did get lonely.
I never took a trip by myself though!
Since my marriage is ending after our trip to Italy this month (family trip with children, etc),
I thought that I would treat myself to a solo trip back to Italy, next spring.
It will be my first year unmarried, and the year before my 50th B-day.
I am a bit trepidatious!
but also very excited and look forward to spending some time alone, in a beautiful , still foreign -to -me place.
I take courage from all the solo travelers (esp. women) who post here!

 
Jun 8th, 2001, 07:15 PM
  #24  
Judy
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Nancyon't worried, travel solo is great liberation,you would really enjoy it. Wish you an enjoyable trip this time too, even thouth it won't be easy.

I have been travel solo (excepy once with my sister,to show her Paris and London) for 25 years, business and personal. unless with perfect companion (but, what's the definition of perfect??),I think travel alone is the only way to be able to relax completely-total freedom, no compromise. I remember years ago, I took a barge trip in Congnac area, there were another 4 couples on board (2 Franch,1 Australia,1 from States). At the beginning, I felt a bit sorry for myself being alone. But, not even half way, all the couples fought with each other,At the meals, I was the only person still talking to everyone. this cured me completely.
Some postings above mentioning dislike eating alone, I am afraid I don't understand. Could someone please explain? I love good food, enjoy going to good restaurant for long meal ( Michelin starred if there was any around). and have never felt anything awkward or strange. I would really like to know the reason of aversion.
 
Jun 9th, 2001, 09:26 AM
  #25  
Linda
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My first trip to Italy was by myself simply because I couldn't find anyone that wanted to go with me. It was the best vacation I ever had. Sure, I missed dining with someone at dinnertime. But the pluses far outweighed the minuses. I met a lovely couple from Austrailia while I was in Florence and we spent the day together at Siena and then had dinner. Another evening in Rome the waiter sat me at a table next to an American. Turns out he was from a city about 200 miles from me so we had dinner together and then went to a museum that was open late on Wednesdays. He had no idea it was open so came along. We had a great time. And then there were the 4 women I took the overnight train with from Naples to Venice - oh boy, we had quite the conversations - very little English spoken by them and very little Italian from me. I then met a couple in Cinque Terra that I noticed had a Rick Steves book like mine and had dinner with them and also ended up staying at the same B&B. Am I that outgoing? I don't know. I do know traveling by myself MADE me want to talk to strangers and strike up a conversation. I think if I had been with a companion, I might not have made the effort. I also had people mistaking me for being from Italy because I wasn't walking around speaking English so it was quite funny when someone would walk up to me and start asking me a question. My standard phrase, "Mi dispiace, non parlo Italiano" was used frequently.
 
Jun 9th, 2001, 09:57 AM
  #26  
Annette
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After reading through the other posters here like Judy's, and also Kavey's on the holding hands thread, I'm going to do a good re-think on eating solo. And gosolo poster, I agree with Capo that your perception of travelling couples holding hands is more a matter of your perception. I did see a Rick Steves video awhile back in which he suggested that couples travelling together do take some half days or a day time apart to discover the travel destination on their own terms. However, I think most people do this naturally.
 
Jun 9th, 2001, 05:44 PM
  #27  
nancy
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Judy,
eleven! more days until we leave.
gosh, the year seemed to crawl, and the last month is flying by.
The eating thing;
Could it be generational / cultural?
I was taught that a lady never entered a bar type business on her own, as her intentions might be mistaken.
Maybe some of that applies to eating establishments also?
OR, could it be, that women were not supposed to go out unaccompanied at all?
and we were only supposed to be out if we HAD a man to accomany us.!
afterall, things have changed for women quite a bit in the last 40-80 yrs, and some attitudes linger on for a while.
Now, I bet younger women would have very little probs eating out alone.
Their self worth was not as tightly entwined with whether or not they "have" a man.
Afterall, just think of the songs from the 1950's and the early-mid 60's!!
Our trip will be spectacular!
Thanks

 
Jun 9th, 2001, 06:06 PM
  #28  
mimi taylor
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Nancy, I went on my dream vacation by myself to Provence because my husband sings in a chorus and they exchange with other countries so we could not afford two vacations as his trips are on his own expense as it is not a professional group. I decided not to put my trip on hold any longer. Because I don't drive is maybe the reason I hesitated for so long. It turned out-I had a ball!!!I hung out one day with some French kids half my age who were visiting their friend in Avignon. I met a local woman in the post office who I now write and dine with once a year. I do not mind dining alone,my literary mentor being MFK Fisher. Everwhere I went people were most helpful. You really are treated the way you act. Have a wonderful time and don't hesitate to eat in the best restaurant alone...I hope you will read Fishers books. After her divorce she goes back to France and.......well read on!
 
Jun 9th, 2001, 06:33 PM
  #29  
Judy
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Mimi: I am a fan of MFK Fisher too. I have read all her books. Have you read one of her story about eating in a obscure restaurant while doing a walking trip in Brittany? It is so funny!
 
Jun 9th, 2001, 08:46 PM
  #30  
elvira
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About eating alone:
This was told to me several years ago by a very learned and worldly person - he said that in his native France after WWII there were many, many solo women because their husbands had died in the war; they were viewed as semi-heroines and were accorded the proper respect as such, and not viewed as second-class citizens. A woman dining alone was seen, not as she couldn't GET a man, but that she had LOST one.

I've never felt uncomfortable dining alone, and in France at least, I usually get put in the window ("see this is a nice place, SHE's eating here!"). In America, women have in years past been bad tippers, so waiters were never fond of seeing any of us without a man; with the tip included in most meal prices, that's never been an issue in Europe. Thankfully, the view has changed in America so that stigma is removed.

When I travel alone, sometimes I see something and think "oh I wish my sister was here for that" or "I wish Rusty could hear that", but I've never felt lonely. When I travel with the Loons, I enjoy seeing things through their eyes and the replaying of events during the day; we have a storehouse of stories we retell each other and all Oldhand has to say is "paEALLa" and I'm doubled over with laughter.

I wouldn't trade my solo travel nor my trips with the Loons for anything.
 
Jun 9th, 2001, 10:37 PM
  #31  
xxxxx
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OK, for the uninitiated, what or who are the Loons. There is a whole network
of people out there, who are not on the
inside track of your life.
But seriously, I have never thought of a
woman or man eating alone as strange or
a "geek", in fact, a person eating alone
seems more interesting. Whenever I eat
alone at home or in Europe, I always get
more attention. Maybe I have a friendly
face.
 
Jun 9th, 2001, 10:54 PM
  #32  
Jen
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I prefer to travel alone. Yes it can be lonely at times, but for me I am also one that has interests that my companions were not amused by. However my problem is finding suitable companions as a whole. My sister and I have come to an understanding after a few Ugly American fights in our hotel rooms. From now on we'd do our own thing if we felt safe going to the destination; otherwise it is compromise and endure. So we've continued to travel together and it has worked for us. My other companions from trips past were a nightmare. Thankfully my mindset was to ignore and enjoy as much as possible. Personally I'd recommend travel alone to Afganistan versus going with a companion that is a moron to your dream vacation. Having come back from my umpteenth stay in the UK with my latest companion, I vowed to him to never travel with him again, something that has helped end a 13 year friendship. His behavior was obnoxious. He preferred to sit up nights rereading sci-fi novels and then sleep in rather than get out and see the world. He saw two museums in one week--that was IT! He treated me like a tour guide rather than an active participant in the trip. I was so embarrassed by the way he dressed, the way he communicated with the locals, his loudness. It would have been horrible if I hadn't resolved to dump his sorry butt every morning and go off and find my own adventure. You need someone with your mindset, not someone posturing to get along with you and your ideas. Travel can make or break friendships/relationships. I can get along perfectly with someone at home, but if they act like the stereotypical tour bus tourist versus a seasoned traveler (even if its their first trip) drop them and save yourself, you will regret it otherwise.
 
Jun 10th, 2001, 05:16 AM
  #33  
ana
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Posters who spoke of author MFK Fisher - can you give some examples of what she has written. Sounds interesting. Thaks
 
Jun 10th, 2001, 06:25 AM
  #34  
Kavey
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Annette

I am thrilled if my post and many others from the participants here give you more confidence to try again on the solo dining and therefore open yourself up to even more great experiences while travelling...

I am not saying you wont find it a little unnerving the first couple of times, it is hard to break the habits we have and it is also hard to stop worrying about what others might be assuming about you... but you though a meal alone is very different to one with company it is a wonderful thing in its own right...

In company you have the chance to share thoughts about the day and sometimes this can give you additional perspectives on what you have seen during the day, but alone you have the chance to really look at your surroundings and to either relax totally with a great book or to mingle with locals or other travellers nearby...

 
Jun 10th, 2001, 07:34 AM
  #35  
mimi taylor
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Re:MFK FISHER.For focusing on France,I recommend A Considerable Town, Two Towns in Provence, Map of another time, Long ago in France, and hard to find: THE BOSS DOG, about a maybe feral dog who roams all the cafes in Avignon, so if you have been there, you will feel the spirit on the place. Fisher lived there Other books about food she wrote were, a favorite, A Cordial water: Consiter The Oyster: How to cook a wolf: and so many more. I felt her presence as I dined alone for the first time at Train Bleu, as she would do before catching the train to Provence. I also stayed at the same hotel in Burgundy before I dicovered her and back again on our way south last year. And for the first time in my life I tasted thr blue trout she beautifully described.
 
Jun 10th, 2001, 10:53 AM
  #36  
Judy
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More about MFK Fisher, Macmillan USA published a collection of her books about food :The art of eating. I think all the food lovers shall have one. Her books really show people how to appreciate different food and that is part of the fun from travel.
 
Jun 10th, 2001, 02:06 PM
  #37  
top
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top
 
Jun 10th, 2001, 04:03 PM
  #38  
nancy
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Mimi,
thanks!
The Loons are a group of people Elvira travels with (I think)
Very entertaining bunch , from reading her threads!
 
Jun 11th, 2001, 06:15 AM
  #39  
martha python
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I've had good and bad trips travelling alone. The friendlier the people, the better the food, the better I speak the language, and the more fiscally secure I am, the better the time I have. Not being able to afford a hotel in a safe neighborhood, not eating much because nothing appeals, or being unable to find anyone willing to help me when I was lost or confused was hard to take on my own--although it probably wouldn't have been much fun with a companion, either.
Germany on my own was miserable; Germany with friends was OK.
France and Italy on my own were good, with friends were good, with my spouse were fabulous.
I liked England on my own better than England with friends, for some reason.
 
Jun 11th, 2001, 03:53 PM
  #40  
Sally
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Ionewolf,
Have you traveled solo? Are you friendly, social, attractive? Why eat alone or visit sites alone if you don't want to? Meet others and go with them. When alone I tend to eat on the run which is a good thing as it gives me more time to see the sites. The only "rotten" travel, altho I wouldn't use that strong of a word, has been when I've done trips with several people. Too difficult and way too much time spent saying "Well what do you want to do or where does everyone want to eat?".
 

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