Since starting my RV journey last fall, there is one question I get more often than anything else. Don’t you get lonely? It’s one of those questions that catch me completely off-guard every time, because I can’t imagine what would cause anyone to think I’m capable of loneliness.
I’m an only child. The thought of not being alone is what terrifies me. I enjoy other people’s company, but there is no one’s company I love more than my own. Constantly being bombarded by someone else’s presence sounds absolutely awful.
So, do I get lonely when travelling solo? No, I don’t. And if I could get even more alone time, I would take it. But, instead of droning on about how much I love my me time, I’ll share why travelling solo is not as lonely as many people think it will be.
Technology Keeps Us Connected
I have movie nights on Friday with my mom, every week. We’ve been doing this since I was in Atlanta and we continued it when I left. I call her and we sync the TVs, so we can watch the movie and still have a little chit chat. Every weekend, I also send my grandma that week’s video from my YouTube channel. She loves watching them, so she can see what I’ve been up to.
There are also countless friends who keep up with me online, via chats, and via phone calls. Some of them are also travelling full-time. It’s awesome being a full-time traveller and having other nomads to share experiences with, because there are some things only they can understand.
New Friends Are All Around
Even in redneck Arizona, where almost an entire community shunned me because of the colour of my skin, I found a few friendly faces. I’m still long-distance friends with one of those persons today. Everywhere you go, you can make friends — and it’s easy. Neighbours come up and talk to me all the time. Other times, I start the conversation.
I just travelled from California to Wyoming with my RV neighbour and it all started because I hopped on another neighbour’s golf cart and happened to fly by him while he was in his hammock. The longer you stay in an area, the better your chances of making long-lasting friendships. I usually stay in a general area for 30 days or more.
There Are Lots of Women Traveling Solo
A common observation among RVers and van-lifers is that most of the solo travellers we meet are women. I’m sure there are people who have had opposite experiences, but I haven’t met a single RVer who disagrees with me on this. I lost count of how many women I’ve met travelling solo. I have met only two men travelling solo and that includes my RV neighbour, who is now technically RVing with me.
So, if you’re a woman worried you might have a hard time finding lady friends, trust me when I say the actual unicorns are men travelling without wives and children. It really makes me reconsider who the more co-dependent sex is.
RVing Can Be Socially Exhausting
There are some experiences I enjoy a little more alone. I prefer to camp solo than to camp with someone else. Both are enjoyable, but I foresee I’ll be doing more solo camping than group camping in the future. A big part of this is that, as an only child, most of my hobbies are single-player tasks. For example, I like to read or write and having someone else around makes that impossible.
In fact, about a week or two into our month-long trip from California to Wyoming, I told my travel buddy to go on ahead. Some days, I don’t want to see another living person I know and I don’t want to say, “Hello” or “Good morning.” It’s really hard to have that when you’re travelling with someone else.
So, will I go back to solo travel after I leave Wyoming? Absolutely! Right now, I’m enjoying my time on the farm and being part of a unit. We all have different schedules and no one questions me when I pack up the truck and disappear all day. But, travelling 1,100 miles with someone else definitely taught me that solo travel is my preferred setting. I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
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