A few years ago I took up solo traveling after attempting to go to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil with a group of people. It ended up as an epic fail. None of the people ended up going. I was stuck. I had to make a decision, proceed to the Rio de Janeiro alone or forgo my tickets to the Italy vs. England game as well as the Iran vs. Nigeria game. My choice was clear.
Traveling solo, I was unapologetically me. I was not afraid to talk to people or make friends. Often times this occurred in the most random places and at the most random times. I’ve noticed that at those times, that was when I was freest. I was free in thought, in action and most of all in spirit. I was fearless, well almost. It was as if I was a diamond in its purest form, before being refined by society and pressures of the world.
Fast forward to 2016 and about 10 solo trips later, I found myself in France staying with my friend “Mo”. Mo and I met in the strangest of ways in Capetown, South Africa. It was my last day in town and we were both waiting in line to get on the cable car for Table Mountain. The difference, Mo hadn’t bought her ticket and I had bought mine.
The line was ridiculously long and at the time the heat of the day was bearing down on our necks. We had already waited about 15 min in line but the line hardly moved. I had to make a choice, leave the line and lose the money I spent on my ticket, stay in line and miss my tour to Robben Island or give my ticket to the nice young lady I had just met. As they say, the rest is history.
I made Mo a very happy person by giving her my ticket. She made me an even happier person by accepting my request to stay with her when I visited France. Two strangers whose paths were very dissimilar meeting in the most unassuming way. I ended up learning that Capetown was Mo’s first solo trip. In that first solo trip she met a random stranger and invited them into her home. Some call it chance, I call it fate.