Sunday, January 16, 2011

What are you so scared of?

                        "Growth means change and change involves risk, stepping from the known to the unknown"
                                                     - Author Unknown

Whenever I told anyone I was starting my South American journey in Colombia, they told me that it wasn´t safe and I really had to be careful. When I told them I was going to be alone, after they erased the look of disbelief from their face, they asked "aren´t you scared?" I always said no... I understand that people may not realize how safe Colombia is now or what an up and coming tourist destination it is, but their fears are unfounded and uneducated. The truth is, I was scared...but not of Colombia, or that something terrible would happen to me. I was scared of travelling by myself.

I would consider myself a pretty avid traveller, and I am not scared of any particular destination. What is scary to me is to not have that travel partner to share everything with. Being somewhere unfamiliar is always a little easier with someone else who is unfamiliar with it too. When you don´t know where to go or what you are supposed to do, two brains are always better than one. It is also nice to have someone to share your day to day experiences, and to always be able to talk to. In South America, my lack of spanish skills is a huge set back and just having a conversation is near impossible.

Although I was afriad, fear always presents you with two opportunities. The first is to let it hold you back. You won´t be scared, but you won´t have much else either. The second opportunity is to challenge yourself, expand your experiences and see exactly what you are made of.  I had always wondered if I could keep up this life style if, god forbid, Larry falls in love or suddenly lusts for real life. Now was my chance to see if I could really do it.

Surprisingly, it has been easier than I thought. Even with a language barrier, and vast amounts of uncertainty, I am getting around and meeting people along the way. It is liberating to know that I can do this!!

5 years ago, if you had asked me what I thought I would be doing in 5 years time, I can gaurantee that I never would have said travelling alone in South America. It has been a series of scary descions that have brought me here, but there is no place I would rather be right now!!

So, in the end, I have conqureded my fear of solo travel..................but............. i don´t like it. I can do it, but if it is up to me, I will always have a travel partner by my side. Although, when all else fails, I will travel alone instead of leading a most ordinary life.

What are you scared of?
What is holding you back?
Where could you be if you weren´t held back by your fears?



  1. Gosh Crissy, i admire you so much! Totally amazing that you are so fearless!

  2. Good for you Cris! I'm sure it wasn't easy to travel solo, but seriously. . . you are probably the most adaptable person I've ever met! Love that about you!