Today’s writing challenge topic: Have you ever taken a trip by yourself? Do you prefer to travel with people or alone?
I have done both. I don’t mind going alone. That’s what happened when I scheduled a trip to Costa Rica when I was in college. None of my friends had the money or the determination to make the trip, but I planned for a year to be able to go. It was an amazing adventure. (My mom calls me a daredevil!) I met a very nice man (Eduardo) on the plane who got us a taxi when we landed while I guarded the luggage. I hadn’t made hotel reservations, so Eduardo told the driver where I needed to be. I asked for “cheap and clean.” The hotel was in the Zona Rosa (red light district), but it was fine. I felt safe there because Pancho (clerk/receptionist) always kept an eye out for my safety. He wouldn’t let me go out alone even though I thought I was perfectly capable of protecting myself. He would find out where I wanted to go and search for another guest going the same place. I remember playing cards with Pancho and two other guests almost every night. One guest spoke Greek, Arabic and some English, another spoke Albanian and some Greek, Pancho spoke only Spanish. Luckily, I completed the circle with English and Spanish. The Albanian guy would say something in Greek which was translated into English. I then would tell Pancho what was going on. If it was a joke, the guys waited for the final translation before they laughed.
I have traveled with my older daughter. When she was about 10, we went to Puerto Rico for a week. We had a great time (if you don’t count an ear infection from the pool). We both learned a lot on that trip. It was memorable also because one of my very best pals “decided” to have a heart attack while my back was turned! I was ready to get on a flight home, but she was well enough to tell me to stay in Puerto Rico and come home as scheduled.
My older daughter went with me to Mexico. It was a difficult trip in many ways since she was a teen at the time. A teacher friend accompanied us with her granddaughter. I had invited a student along to round out the group. (His Spanish skills improved so much that week!)
My younger daughter and I have a trip planned to Europe within the next couple of years. Since we lived in Mexico for about five years, she is comfortable in the Mexican culture. Her Spanish is better than mine. We speak the language, so Spain should be awesome!
I can travel comfortably alone or with others. I would prefer to travel with people I know, but when we sign up to be part of a tour group, getting to know fellow travelers is part of the adventure. I jokingly tell people I can be packed in 10 minutes. I’m not really kidding, though!