It has always had a distinctive strange appeal to me- the experience of getting lost. To me, there is no better confirmation of a person’s independence than having the ability to revel in raw, undetermined, impulsive decisions. Therein lies the evident advantages of travelling solo. With no one to confer decisions with and no one to argue on directions with, you literally take yourself to indefinable right and left turns, get off at surprise delight stops and in case of dead ends- simply end up bothering no one else but yourself (the consoling part unfortunately, would have to be done on your own as well). Eventually, whether you like it or not, you open a door to knowing yourself. You discover how and when to rely on gut feel or your instincts. You get to level off your endurance and patience but more importantly, you learn to trust yourself more.
I like spontaneous long bus rides – to destinations unbeknownst even to me. I prefer riding first class – which usually means riding on the roof of local provincial jeepneys, on the driver back side of tricycles and killer non-air-conditioned buses that run at a speed of 120-140kph during midnight. I like mapping out my own little shortcuts for places, and naming them as if I’ve conquered them. I like walking around places and reaching disappointing blind alleys and learning where to turn (after then nth time) and torturing and dragging my feet just to see which street will lead me where (or nowhere at all).
I don’t have issues asking people for help during desperate trying times and in fact, appreciate the 20-second kindness strangers give other strangers, leading those who are lost to the right path (that right there,has got to be the cheesiest line I have written!). The fact is, getting lost requires nothing but common sense, strong guts and a pair of calloused feet. So go on, lose yourself. (Btw, I think the picture should say – Let’s find a beautiful place we could get lost in.)