Update about my journey in India and how I feel about solo traveling

l1100195-9After a month doing my internship in Artchill, I decided to quit and move forward. The internship didn’t allow me to travel and took all my time and energy. After investing my own resources to be in India and to live here, I definitely was sure that I deserve to see the country. While I was working in the gallery, all I saw were work and home, with few parties in between. It was an irreplaceable experience but one month was enough. Maybe I will write about how Indians do business here and about their values in life, but let’s leave it for another time.

Last week of staying in Jaipur was very stressful. I had already announced the fact that I was quitting and I stopped going to the gallery the same day. However, I still had to stay in Jaipur for a while to arrange my next move. I decided to relocate to Delhi and to keep a base there as my flight back to Europe is from there and also traveling from Delhi is easier. I got a place in Delhi for a week and I couldn’t stand my host. It was a torture to have any kind of conversation with him. Most Indian people love complaining, criticizing and they see only negative things while I’m the kind of person who looks only for good and positive things. I was lucky to have my friend visiting me during the weekend so we went to visit Agra and Taj Mahal. I never came back to the place I stayed. After getting back to the city I found another host for few nights and it was fun as we had a wild party on the rooftop with doing bollywood dances! Now I’m finally settled and have a nice place till the end of my stay in India (hopefully). Besides, I changed my ticket and will go to Europe sooner than I planned. My friends and family were so happy about the fact that I cannot be more grateful to have them in my life. It’s a nice feeling when your loved ones are waiting for you so impatiently!

One night I was sitting in a really cool restaurant in Delhi with a great lounge music, having dinner and drinking mojito. It felt so lonely that I had to take my notebook and share my feelings on the paper and now I want to share them with you. The place was really amazing, I loved the atmosphere, the food was great and it was a lovely evening overall. I had very mixed emotions, I felt so excited and happy but at the same time I felt sad because I wanted to share my feelings with someone and to have fun together. But I had to sit alone and act normal as being alone requires different behavior, especially in India. Everywhere I go here, I’m the only white person. First of all, I don’t like touristic places so I like to blend in local atmosphere but here it’s strictly prohibited to contact with locals, it’s really not safe. 

The first time I realized I’m enough with solo traveling was in New York City (NYC) in January, 2016. After visiting my best friend in Florida, we went to NYC for a week. She had business meetings there and for me it was a reason to visit NYC again. My friend was busy most of the time, so actually I was by myself roaming the city. I remember walking around the city in a warm and pleasant evening, I felt so happy and truly enjoyed the present moment. But I felt a huge emptiness in my heart as I wanted to express my feelings. I realized how lonely NYC actually is. A city with population of 8,5 million citizens was the place where you pass by a lot of people but most of them were feeling alone in the crowd. That was a moment when I understood that I don’t want to be a solo traveler on full time basis. I still love it, but I need company time to time.

During my trip here in India another solo traveler told me – yes, you meet a lot of people while traveling alone but they always have to go and you both have to move forward. At the end of the day you’re alone. 

On the road again...

On the road again…

What exactly India is teaching me? I’m having several revelations about life, relationships and my expectations. I’m going to spend a week in ashram in Rishikesh before I head back to Europe. This is something I’ve always wanted to do if I ever come to India. Now I can make it happen. Finally I hope to experience the spiritual India if such actually exists… Maybe it’s just a commercial illusion as everything what I’ve experienced and got to to know is that most of people are interested only in money. These months have been  only about people with material values, about sorting people because of the cast system, about violent news in newspapers, about being rude to people just to protect yourself, about holding different negative emotions towards people around, about surviving. At the same time, experiencing amazing culture, having wonderful meetings along the journey, gaining new, strong friendships, having lots of fun and doing crazy things, and expanding the mind like never before.

India has been tough to me but I believe I needed this experience. I’ve been spoilt my whole life and I guess I needed a slap in my face to realize the actual life we’re living in and to become stronger and more independent in my emotions, and to learn to protect myself when nobody else is around to do that.

Are you a solo traveler? Have you ever experienced similar emotions like I did? Share your experience! 

 

2 Comments

  • Aija says:

    I don’t mind to travel without company for a day or two. But I also need company to whom share my excatement. I think I understand you completely. Hope that in Ashram you will see that side of spiritual India everyone is talking about. 🙂

  • Nishant says:

    Hi Linda, good to know you’re finally back home with your family. On behalf of my country would like to thank you for visiting and apologies for any inconvenience caused during your stay.

    You have interpreted quite a few things perfectly. Your judgements have been spot on most of the time and more importantly justified. The country is dealing with its own problems currently after it has seen independence post 150 years. (that is not a small number) As an analogy the country and its people are like teenagers who have just understood that decisions can be taken – right or wrong who knows. Divided by castes, religions this country was torn to pieces in those 150 years. But wait, We’re are just about coming together. Forming strength. Don’t misunderstand me – Im not presenting a biased perspective of the country.

    I urge you to travel beyond the North of India as the nation is much more than what you saw. “22 official languages” can you imagine the vast culture. See beyond what’s visible (agony, anger and despair) you will see love, open hearts and houses and some really amazing cultures.

    I am travelling solo too and reflect a lot of your thoughts. But going solo is a choice it’s a decision you take fully understanding its the unknown – life won’t be fair and that my friend is the fun.

    I could go on but not unless I hear your side of the story. Hope you return someday to our country India where a guest is equalled to god.

    God Bless

    ~ Nishant