Being a solo female traveler, now on the road for close to two years, people often wonder how I handle relationships. I’ve been asked if I wished I was traveling with someone and I always say, “No.” I haven’t formed an ongoing relationship with anyone the whole time I’ve been traveling. When you don’t spend much time in one place, it’s hard to get to know anyone and once you do, it’s time to leave. So what does one do when she thinks she’s met the “man of her dreams”?
I’ve questioned that conundrum often, wondering if I should let my wall down and take a gamble. I always used to say that the one for me is probably not located in whatever city I lived in back in the U.S. It’s a big world out there, who knows where I may meet him? Now that I’m really out here and meeting people from all corners of the globe, what should I do? Form a relationship and put travel on hold while attempting to stay in that country? Keep in touch and hope that something develops over email while continuing my journey?
Naturally, the tourist visa gets in the way and makes it difficult to stay in a country for an extended period of time. However, I’ve also found that having to leave is a good way of getting out of a relationship. There’s an expiration date that you are both aware of. It could also be that you want what you can’t have which makes starting a relationship exciting. It’s often hard to tell if you really are compatible or if it’s just the thrill of meeting someone new.
My goal of traveling the world was not to meet a man. I stubbornly find myself putting relationships at the bottom of the list so nothing can stand in my way. I’d like to think that if I do meet “the one” that there will be a spark I simply cannot ignore and that my heart will overrule my head. Until then, it’s undoubtedly a steep slope to navigate. I enjoy meeting new people and creating relationships that don’t involve falling in love. However, I now feel that keeping my eyes and options open should really be what drives this bus. Shooting down relationships from the get-go is a self-fulfilled prophecy that will never come to fruition.
It’s been a privilege being in beautiful places and doing fun things with someone. I’ve been wined and dined under the twinkling lights of harbors; seen endless views of the ocean from stunning sea side clifftops; been caught in the rain walking down dirt roads in a cloud forest and watched amazing sunsets while sitting on deserted beaches. Being alone in this adventure doesn’t have to mean being lonely and I’m happy to have found some amazing people to spend unforgettable moments with. Even if they weren’t “the one”.
If you’re a solo traveler, how have you dealt with relationships on the road? Post your comments below!