I like to joke about how I should be the last person leaving my house. Despite my confident guise and relative ease with networking for work; I struggle in most social situations. Put me in a public place, and I will most likely fumble it.
The time I was about to sit down and had the chair pulled out from underneath me, landing me on the floor – in front of my crush.
Or how I wrapped an unsuspecting man in a tight embrace from behind, thinking it was my friend.
Home or away, I always find a way to bring my awkwardness everywhere.
Here are a few fun facts that make me an unlikely traveller:
I Like My Space
As an introvert, I love being able to escape inside my head and just enjoy my solitude. After a long day of being out in public and interacting with other humans, retiring to a room where another person is breathing gets under my skin.
That’s why I cringe at the thought of group trips with shared rooms. It might be a great way to save money, but travelling is supposed to be enjoyable yes?
I’ve learned that going with people I like, and just communicating my need for space makes it easier.
I’m a Picky Eater
Everyone always reacts in shock when I mention I’m a really picky eater. Aside from the fact that I occasionally write food reviews, food is an unavoidable part of travel.
When you’re in a new country, you’re not always going to find what you’re used to. I’ve somehow figured out how to travel as a picky eater so yay.
I Overthink Everything
I mean everything. What kind of music will be playing at the club? What if I get mugged? What if the weather randomly changes? What if? What if? What if?
The thought of going out to buy bread without carefully planning out my route and calling to see if they have the kind I want is terrifying. Spontaneous and I don’t go together, but I’m learning to change that.
I’m Not Exactly Multilingual
I grew up speaking and listening to a number of languages; including Yoruba, French and Afrikaans. Maybe it’s because I spend most of my time speaking English, but my grip on languages is a bit shaky. But I’ve gotten lost in many cities with broken French as my only tool – and here I am.
I Really Like My Own Bed
I’m the friend who wants to go home after a night out, so I can take a warm shower, change, and climb in between my satin sheets.
My allergies and inhibition to dirt make it hard to just crash on any ol’ couch.
This is why I advocate for comfortable travel. This doesn’t mean you have to break the bank though, there are a number of high-end alternatives at regular prices to take advantage of.
This Green Passport
I have a green passport. Expensive (non-refundable) visa fees, ridiculous document requirements and tedious application processes. All this should remove most of the appeal of travelling. To cap it all off, I earn in Naira. Clearly, I should just stay in my house but somehow, I’m determined not to let it hold me back.
I Don’t Know How To Act In Public
Seriously. What do I do with my hands? Does standing like this make me look weird? Am I starting to stare at this person too much? I’m never quite sure what to do in public – now imagine being surrounded by people with a different culture.
If being awkward at home isn’t enough, why not stick out like a sore thumb abroad?
None of these reasons matter though. You can’t let definitions and reality take over your life and stop you from doing the things you want. Dance without any rhythm, trip and fall in public, sing karaoke with your back facing the crowd. Just do it anyway, before you know it, you’ll be wondering what you were ever afraid of.
What’s something you love to do even though your personality says otherwise?