Thursday, January 10, 2013

Hamburg ... travel companion

My short trip to Hamburg has not only been a wonderful way to end a wonderful year, no, it has been an experiment as well. As you may recall, I traveled with someone I had met thanks to an ad I had placed in a travel magazine. A first for me. I had never traveled with a complete stranger before.
I must admit that a couple of days before our departure ... I got nervous. I was about to go on a trip with someone I had met two times for coffee. Someone, in fact, I didn't know AT ALL. I didn't panic but I felt kind of queasy (mulmig).
I decided not to overthink the situation and to trust my instincts and my self-reliance. Whatever would happen ... would happen.

It went well but at the same time ... it felt strange. Not bad. Just strange. To share so much time with a person you barely know - no, actually a person you don't know at all. You not only share time but also a room. Breakfast. Dinner.
On the other hand, I walked a foreign city NOT by myself, was able to share fascinating things I saw and the decision-making wasn't up to me only. And I had dinner in restaurants in the evening! When I'm traveling alone, I rarely have dinner in restaurants in the evenings. I usually eat lunch and then buy something for me to eat in the hotel room. Even after all my trips, I still feel awkward to enter a restaurant alone. Apparently, I am not alone with this feeling. My "Hamburg" companion, C., admitted that she neither eats in restaurants in the evenings when traveling alone. Funny, must be a women thing.

What I most appreciated though was that she wasn't the "I have to tell you my whole life story" kind of girl. We talked, yes, but not all the time. She was, as I am, comfortable with silence.

All in all it was a good experience. I'd do it again, at least for some short trips. Now, a three-weeks-trip to whatever destination? I am not sure about that. But, who knows? I might change my mind ... as I am known to do SMILE

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