Solo travelling isn’t for everyone even though the idea appears simple. Non-travelers think that all you have to do is pick up your bags, book a bus/plane and explore the concrete/natural forests. I’d have to disagree with that. Without the intense desire to be a vagabond, you’d just be another rich tourist getting run over by scammers in a foreign land.
I know what you’re thinking — “Alok, you’ve written blogs about how solo travelling is great. Why would you contradict yourself?” Well, I am not contradicting myself. Travelling without accompaniment is fun. Your decisions are not shared and you can move without the baggage of someone else’s opinions. However, the real essence of solo travelling can only be experienced when there is a strong longing, a ‘calling’.
I’ve been a depressed man for years, it was a chain reaction. One thing led to another and I ended up in a job that was ‘just okay’. My supportive and loving family were convinced that I was happy, but there was seriously something wrong with me. People say I was depressed but I am not entirely sure because my daily life was not hampered. I felt like an empty shell, and there was a ‘splinter’ in my head that was driving me crazy.
The ‘splinter’ begot a strong yearning. You want to get out of ‘yourself’ but it doesn’t happen right away. Slowly, the yearning turned into a ‘calling’ that I explained earlier. The feeling was fueled by Osho as well. When you receive a ‘calling’ you don’t plan in advance to take a long tour. You just tend to leave what you’re doing at the moment.
With only 200 bucks in my pocket, a few t-shirts, and a ragged pair of jeans, I released myself to the wilderness. My first stop was at Haridwar, where the evening arti nourished my soul. I later moved to the Gangotri. This is where I felt it, the freedom. The pristine view of the Gaumukh transformed me. I meditated for a few minutes on a high rock. From there on, I was a new man.
I’d suggest everyone to wait for the calling because solo trips can are than just an excursion to a panoramic site without friends. It’ll come to you, don’t worry.