I’ve finally begun to make it a reality! Slowly but surely, I’m taking my first steps to travel alone. For years now, I’ve been telling myself and those close to me of the places I want to visit and cultures I’d like to explore. And for years, I’ve watched everyone around me take those envious leaps without me. I often found myself scanning social media with regret of why I was never prepared enough to join. I started to feel that sharing my dreams of traveling was becoming a broken record, one I no longer wanted to believe or listen to for that matter.
In the Fall of 2016 I came across a quote posted on Instagram by @thegoodquote that read, “STOP OVER THINKING. OVER THINKING RUINS ANY CHANCE YOU HAVE OF BEING HAPPY. YOU THINK YOUR WAY OUT OF HAPPINESS. JUST CHILL AND TRUST YOURSELF.” I nearly punched myself in my cute face when that little light switched on. My first thought was “I need to travel!” Here I was this guy who had the balls to move across the country to California at the tender age of eighteen, just two weeks after high school, knowing nothing about anything. I then managed to survive eight hectic years in New York City, the nations fastest paced city! (If you can make it there you can make it anywhere) And now here I was in South Beach, another culturally eclectic city, alone! (Side note: A little help from wonderful friends and family members made it possible for me to get my feet on the ground in California and South Beach). However, I was supporting myself! I’d learned how to stretch a dollar. I’ve had to face the decision of what was more important, a cocktail? or groceries? I won’t lie, most times I went for the cocktail but I always managed a way to eat. It wasn’t the burger I craved, but I ate. #poormanproblems. Bottom line, I had been surviving for nearly fifteen years on my own in these amazing cities, why was I so afraid of traveling abroad alone?
My problem was fear. Fear that I wouldn’t have enough money to sustain myself. Fear that something would happen to me with no one around to help. Fear of the judgment I would receive from other cultures. Fear Fear Fear! It was all bullshit that’s what it was! I had become too comfortable in my settings. I don’t know about you, but I tend to be bored/boring when too comfortable. In New York City I got used to the world coming to me. I bartended during those days and had the pleasure of meeting beautiful people from all over. Some, that til this day, I keep very close contact with. The time had come for ME to pay THEM a visit. It’s time to be shaken up! My eyes need to be entertained, my brain needs to soak up new knowledge in order to keep me on my toes.
Learning about new cultures that are completely different from my own (Mexican-American), is what I feel will be the best gift I can give myself. I feel it in my gut that this will be the start of a new beginning for me. Where it may lead me is unknown but I’ve heard it over and over and again, traveling is the best education one can get!
My journey began on April 1st. I stopped by New York City, for a long weekend, to receive my blessings from my closest friends. Passed through Madrid, Spain to see Tom ( a NYC friend) and drop-off some luggage because I plan on returning for the summer months. And currently, I’m visiting my high school best friend, Janah, in Sri Lanka and having such an amazing time. So far I’ve had nothing to fear, the Universe along with my friends have taken great care of me. I’m learning how to trust my instincts and allowing myself to enjoy my moments wherever I go.
Stories of Madrid, Spain soon to come, along with photos.
Written by: Jacob Coronado