Traveling By Yourself Sucks. This is Why.

Ok ok I’m sorry, I’ve totally been slack­ing in the blog depart­ment lately.  My intern­ship started yes­ter­day and I had been try­ing to get every­thing in place for that, plus did you know about sleep? It’s awe­some.  But now that things have calmed down a lit­tle, it’s time for the part 2 of the down­sides to trav­el­ing your­self, which of course is some­thing that I fig­ured out the hard way when I decided to do a solo road trip from here to Maine last week.

Trav­el­ing solo can be awe­some.  But trav­el­ing with some­body else can be awe­some too, which is what I found out when my mom decided to come join me in Aca­dia National Park.  If you’re trav­el­ing with some­body else, you don’t run into these problems:

1. Sketchy-ass sketchy mcs­ketchy Rapetown truck stops

I men­tioned before that solo trav­el­ing is nice because you get to stop when­ever you want.  How­ever, there’s noth­ing quite like stop­ping at some aban­doned run­down rest stop fresh off the set of Crim­i­nal Minds, at 11 pm, because lit­er­ally the only alter­na­tive was pee­ing all over your car, to real­ize that you are one lone, mor­tal being.  Now keep in mind, I’m not a small girl. I’m 5’10 and get mis­taken for a soc­cer player mul­ti­ple times a week (that’s a com­pli­ment, right? all the girl soc­cer play­ers I know are hot, any­ways).  But it doesn’t how mat­ter how strong your quads are if you’ve just been attacked with Chlo­ro­form and a knife.  I’m sorry, I’m sorry, that’s mor­bid.  BUT THAT’S WHAT GOES THROUGH YOUR HEAD AT 11 PM AT AN ABANDONED TRUCK STOP BATHROOM IN RAPETOWN.

2. You feel super, super awk­ward eat­ing at restaurants.

The only time I ever actu­ally ate at nice restau­rants on this trip was when I was with my mom.  And by that, I mean that had my mom not been there, I would not have had a meal in a sit-down restau­rant one time.  I know, I know, I’m pathetic.  And I obvi­ously don’t think poorly of peo­ple that eat by them­selves at restau­rants, which is why I thought noth­ing of the idea of it before this trip.   But then you go to actu­ally do it, and every­body is hold­ing hands with their lover boy or gig­gling with their girl­friends, and you finally just cave and go, “Ummm…do you do carry-out?”

3.  You don’t get to explore the nightlife.

Just for the record, I had every inten­tion to go to bars in Boston and Philly com­pletely by myself, just so that I could blog about the expe­ri­ence.  That was the plan, and I was stick­ing to it.  And then I really thought about the plan, and about how fuck­ing weird that plan made me feel, and I just decided that watch­ing Orange is the New Black on Net­flix in Philly was just as unique of an expe­ri­ence.  So yes, I guess that’s what the kids call “chick­en­ing out.”

4.  Get­ting up early to do things is much, much harder

When I orig­i­nally made my itin­er­ary, I planned to wake up every morn­ing at 7.  Do you know when I actu­ally woke up?  Usu­ally around 9:50, and only because free break­fast stopped being served at 10.  As it turns out, when I have no work or plans or other oblig­a­tions, food is lit­er­ally the only thing that gets me out of bed.  So.  There’s that.

But when my mom was there, we actu­ally did wake up at 7, and got a lot more done as a result.  So.  There’s that.

5.  Dri­ving through cities SUCKS

Have you ever dri­ven through Boston by your­self, with­out a nav­i­ga­tor besides your piece-of-goddamn-shit-GPS?  No?  Let me tell you about it.  You’re dri­ving along on the high­way, men­tally prepar­ing your­self for the shit­storm that is Boston dri­vers, and all of a sud­den your GPS (who I came to chris­ten Mindi, because I’ve never met a Mindi I liked), goes, “TURN. RIGHT. AT. ELM. ST.”  So you turn right at Elm St, you’re dri­ving along, and all of a sud­den Mindi goes, “TURN. LEFT. AT. OAK. ST.,” which, by the way, is LITERALLY the very next turn, so Mindi essen­tially just gave you one sec­ond to merge over four lanes of Boston city traf­fic.  Fuck­ing Mindi.  You don’t have a death wish, so you just keep dri­ving straight, while Mindi goes, “Recal­cu­lat­ing,” in a voice that sounds remark­ably judg­men­tal for an inan­i­mate object and changes your ETA for forty-five min­utes later than it just was two sec­onds ago.  You decide to suck it up and keep dri­ving, when all of a sud­den you come across a seven-way traf­fic cir­cle inter­sec­tion?  What the fuck is this?  Where do I go from here?  Mindi of course isn’t help­ing the cause by going, “CONTINUE. ON. ELM. ST.”  WHICH INTERSECTION IS ELM ST, MINDI?  WHICH ONE?  You decide to take a gam­ble and go for the one directly across the inter­sec­tion, since that seems log­i­cal, but….oh, nope, it was the one right next to you, lead­ing you to go around Dante Inferno’s Sev­enth Cir­cle of Traf­fic Hell about four or five times until you finally take the right one.  Finally, you just admit defeat and accept your fate of get­ting lost in the slums of Boston until you some­how stum­ble upon your hostel.

That entire expe­ri­ence would be much eas­ier with a wing­man.  I’m just throw­ing that out there.

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