Subject: RE: Venice to Florence - Finally (long)
Krystyna:   Thanks for your thoughtful post comparing Venice & Florence as well as your reactions to solo travel.   I have found that having a mission of some sort can help with the feeling of isolation: sometimes photography, sometimes sketching, sometimes searching for certain obscure sites or items. The mission is just something I feel passionate enough about that I will get out of my accoms &happily pursue my interest. It#s amazing how I then often meet other like-minded souls. For example, in Jordan one of my missions was to find old silver bells or doodahs a friend could sew on her belly dancing costumes. That got me into all kinds of conversations! On a trip to Vera Cruz, it was old holy cards for my sister the artist to use in her collages. Also great fun.   I figured this out after a solo trip about 10 years ago to southern Chile; as a 50-something gray-haired vegan hiker traveling by herself, I was definitely the odd one out. If I#d had the presence of mind to think about the ramifications of being alone there, I would have been better prepared with the sketching or other mission.   Hosteling makes it easier to meet folks as well, at least for me. It#s less stressful to ask to join other diners in the communal kitchens/dining rooms than traditional hotel dining rooms I think.   I#m sure you came home a different person than the one who left Toronto however. And isn#t that the mission as well?   Gail In Eugene but never for long