This year is the year of the Big Birthday. The first few months of this year have forced me to confront my innermost thoughts and feelings, and challenged a number of my precepts. I have faced a battle with anxiety, and at times, it has felt as though I was losing that battle.
Standing now on metaphorically firmer ground, I have become somewhat philosophical about my past, present and future. I want to recapture what I consider to be the ‘good old days’ – I travelled solo to watch my favourite band’s final concert, I’ve booked tickets to see two other favourites this year.
Most of all, I want to recapture my fearless independence.
I cannot recall when that recklessness disappeared – it slowly faded away rather than imploded, but I want to know: do I still have it in me, to stand on my own two feet?
The last time I travelled alone was Spring 2014, when I rented an apartment in Stockholm and spent my half-term holiday indulging in my favourite aspects of Swedish culture (tunnbrödsrulle, köttbullar,fika, Skansen etc.) I spent evenings on the sofa in my rented apartment inhaling Dill Chips and drinking white wine, and my days traversing the urban landscape at my leisure. There were no other considerations than ‘Would this make me happy?’. It was great.
Fast forward four years, I’m approaching my 30th birthday, and I have the truly first-world problem of having no holidays booked between now and July, when we embark on our Thai adventure. Time and time again, I find myself staring at the Sprs.me website, debating whether or not I have the balls to book a trip with them.
Srprs.me is a relatively new concept, whereby you select a departure airport, holiday type, duration and accommodation style. You choose your dates, and pay a fixed price, and then you are assigned a travel consultant who chooses your destination, and takes care of your flights and accommodation. You are then sent an information pack detailing when you need to arrive at the airport, and a week before the trip, you are sent a weather forecast to help you plan. You find out your destination at the airport by scratching off a code and inputting it to your personal webpage, and then it’s up to you to make the most out of your trip to an unknown destination.
May half-term is looking particularly uneventful at this time… watch this space!