A Mini Rant

This post, containing my frustrations thus far, will only be published in English. In part because I’m not very good at expression frustration in Italian, and in part because I want to use a lot of vocab that I don’t feel like even attempting to translate.

All that aside, here’s the important stuff:
Traveling alone sucks. There aren’t words to express how much it sucks to sit in an airport by yourself calling your boyfriend and your family to cry instead of having a shoulder to cry on. Alone, you look like the weirdo who’s afraid of planes. Alone, you have to manage your really heavy luggage for nine months in Italy by yourself, and don’t forget that most places in Italy don’t have elevators – just stairs.
When I was leaving for this trip, a lot of people told me I was living out “Eat, Pray, Love.” I can see where the concept fits, but there are some crucial parts missing from that story (and for the purposes of this rant I will confess that I have not read the book, only seen the movie.) They neglect to show you Julia Roberts sitting at the restaurant on her lonesome observing the hundreds of couples that pass by. Instead, she just looks gorgeous sitting there in the sun and meets new friends right away. Julia never has to deal with the creepy dude at the train station who wants money. She also isn’t missing people at home throughout the movie. She’s just at peace. I had three hours to kill when I got to my hotel until check in, so they agreed to watch my luggage so I could run around Rome. The thing is, when you’re alone you have to decide where to go all the time, and there’s no one else to remember which way you turned or hold the map so you don’t get lost. I can’t even tell you how many times I considered walking up to a random person and saying “Lei anche da solo?” (are you also alone?) just to have someone to sympathize with. That’s not liberating, it’s hard. It’s really really hard.


One response to “A Mini Rant

  • Dad

    That’s a very honest and heartfelt sketch of lonesome travelers everywhere, Sweetheart. Believe me, I get you. It reminds me of when I first arrived in San Francisco. I took a room in a “residence hotel” in a fairly seedy part of town (The Tenderloin, which I soon found out was not the safest place on earth, by a long shot) where I lived for a week with the classic red neon light strobing all night long outside my window as I was serenaded by frequent sirens and the occasional, random gunshot. I spent a week there, wandering the streets during the day and holing-up in my room at night, getting daily phone reports from the soon-to-be roommate I didn’t really know (he was a friend of a girl I’d dated the previous year)on the status of his ongoing hunt for an apartment. It was tough, but I was older than you are (about 27/28 at the time) and a guy, AND I was still in a country where I spoke the language, so I’m sure it was a lot easier than what you’re going through. I just wanted you to know I have a flavor of what you’re experiencing, I remember it well, and my hat’s off to you. You’ve got a lot of courage, and I deeply admire that. And like me then, you’re doing what you want and chasing your dreams. Keep on keepin’ on! It WILL get better!

    I love you. -Dad

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