to go to america alone for 4 weeks

(116 Posts)
whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 18:33:52

So, my husband left me a few months ago, after only 5 months of marriage. Horrible situation.

Anyway, I am trying hard to move on and am coping very well duringbthe working week. The weekends are pretty sad and lonely though. I am atteacher and the school hols are the hardest time. Xmas was horrid. 2 whole weeks alone with my sadness! So, even though it is a while away I am already dreading the summer. 6 weeks is an awful lot of time to fill.

I have been thinking of going over to the states for 4 weeks, maybe travelling around a bit and doing something I would never have donew if we were together. However, when I told my parents and some friends my plan they were horrified. They think I am being rash. I am preferring to think of it as being impulsive and enjoying my youth now I am free of cheating ex.

Is it really a stupid idea? Anyone else done this that can offer advice?

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 18:34:34

Sorry for mistakes, am on iPad.

LifeofPo Sun 20-Jan-13 18:35:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LifeofPo Sun 20-Jan-13 18:35:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RandomMess Sun 20-Jan-13 18:36:27

envy

Sounds like a great idea!

Bunbaker Sun 20-Jan-13 18:36:36

Go for it. Sorry you have had such a rough time.

kim147 Sun 20-Jan-13 18:37:33

4 weeks to go on holiday - the USA sounds great. Impulsive is good - except you have to wait till summer to go.

Now if you were to go tomorrow, that would be impulsive grin

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 18:37:49

What a fab plan! Totally agree with you. If you don't like it, or feel lonely or vulnerable, you can just come home early. Go for it!

Euphemia Sun 20-Jan-13 18:38:06

Sounds like a brilliant idea! My first marriage ended after eight months, and I would have loved to be able to afford to do something like that.

Go for it!

Nancy66 Sun 20-Jan-13 18:38:18

Go!!

There's a website for holiday buddies - if you don't fancy going alone - but can't remember what it's called.

If you're not fussed about going on your own then you should def do it.

I travelled alone through Australia in my 20s and had a great time - you always meet people en route that you can hang out with

Go! You will have a fab time....

Warning - you may not want to come back!

ILikeBirds Sun 20-Jan-13 18:38:48

I think it sounds great, I'd love to be able to do another long trip to the states.

financialwizard Sun 20-Jan-13 18:39:01

Definitely go. You will love it, and it will probably help to heal you too.

Shakey1500 Sun 20-Jan-13 18:39:04

Abso-bloody-lutely go!

roughtyping Sun 20-Jan-13 18:39:06

Go. A girl I went to school with is currently cycling the east coast of America down to Mexico (not sure if any further). Looks amazing!

littlewhitebag Sun 20-Jan-13 18:39:07

Sounds fab. I love going to the states! My DD is planning to work there for the entire summer and i am so jealous!

Ragwort Sun 20-Jan-13 18:39:14

Sounds a fantastic idea, go for it. I am sure there are Youth Hostels, or the equivlent, which would be fun and cheap. Have you any contacts at all in the USA, ie: teaching organisation or similar (if you want) - or just enjoy your own company [smile.

mummytime Sun 20-Jan-13 18:39:34

Go! If you can't do it now as a young child-free parent, then when can you?
Do plan well and make sure you don't go into dodger areas of cities, or the desert without water, but have fun.

badguider Sun 20-Jan-13 18:40:35

sounds great... you could even think about working on a summer camp, with your profession you'd get a great senior role.

TaggieCampbellBlack Sun 20-Jan-13 18:40:55

Don't go alone.



TAKE ME WITH YOU!!!!!!!!!!!

Ragwort Sun 20-Jan-13 18:41:02

I travelled around the States for 6 months (admitedly with my DH) but we found Americans incredibly friendly and got lots of invitations to stay with people/use their second home grin etc etc.

TheApprentice Sun 20-Jan-13 18:41:44

I don't know what age you are but it may be worth checking out TrekAmerica - I think they cater for 18 - 38 year olds. They do lots of road trips in various parts of US and lots of people of different nationalities go, and often on their own.

I went on a month's trip around Alaska with them about 15 years ago and it really was great. Not cheap though.

PS I'm a teacher too and before I settled down with my now DH (I married quite late) I found the holidays really hard so I do sympathise.

LadyBeagleEyes Sun 20-Jan-13 18:42:10

Of course you should go.
Stay in youth hostels, it's an amazing way to meet people. Whereabouts are you planning?
Oh and go out tomorrow and buy a Rough Guide or a Lonely Planet and start planning.
Lucky you.

nonpractisingVirgin Sun 20-Jan-13 18:43:46

Why on earth don't they want you to go? Can't think of a better way to spend your summer holiday, I'm really jealous! Sorry to hear you've had a rough time with exH though

kim147 Sun 20-Jan-13 18:44:45

DS would love to have a long foreign holiday over school hols. He's heard all my stories of my travels. Finances and ex would make that difficult.

Of course, the USA is a big country. So many choices. You could do Greyhound and see the real USA. Now that would be an experience.

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 18:45:00

thanks guys. I am suddenly feeling so much more confident and excited about it. Ido like my own company but I have never travelled alone before and I am quite shy about talking to new people. I just want to be out of my comfort zone a little I think.
The summer camp idea is a great idea, I hadn't thought of that. Something to look forward to and focus on if I could do it. I am fed upmof feeling sensory for myself!

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 18:45:04

grin at mummytime's 'childfree parent'!
She's not leaving them locked in the house for 4 weeks to tour the USA! even though that's what I would do if I could get away with it

ILikeBirds Sun 20-Jan-13 18:47:29

Summer camp unlikely to work as the States generally have their summer holidays much earlier than we do in the UK. They start back to school mid August.

Trek America or similar may be a good option for you if you don't want to do your own thing entirely.

Merrylegs Sun 20-Jan-13 18:47:55

You should go. And if you really want to freak the chorus of doom out, tell them you are going to be doing it like this

(Couchsurfing. My US friend does it and has stayed in some great places and met some great people. Definitely not studenty - lots of older professional people involved. Because actually you have to have a house in order to host)

Nancy66 Sun 20-Jan-13 18:49:21

yes ILikeBirds is right - American kid break up quite early in June for their hols

Blu Sun 20-Jan-13 18:49:24

I love travelling alone, and have done it a few times. It is good to have some sort of focus though, and I think it's easier for the very young to hook up and make 'on the road' friends than slightly older people.

Volunteering, or a summer camp, or an activity for part of the time could be really enriching, anyway, and give you a deeper experience of the country.

Exciting!

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 18:50:36

Virgin - I think they are worried that it is just very unlike me. I think they wonder if I am having some sort of breakdown!

Apprentice - thanks for the tip, I will certainly look in to that!

See, I knew it was a good idea! I can't wait, already.

I am only 25 and have been with ex my whole adult life. Need to find me again! (Corny)

ILikeBirds Sun 20-Jan-13 18:51:05

You could also look at something like auto driveaway (presuming you have a licence). Basically you get a set amount of days to drive someone's car from place A to place B

PassMeTheWino Sun 20-Jan-13 18:51:13

Sounds like a fucking awesome idea.

I left England when my EX was being a dick and went travelling on my jones. I was 20 and it was amazing. I loved it.

It'll be the best time O' y'life.

Rosduk Sun 20-Jan-13 18:51:21

I did it when I was 18 and loved it! Do it while you can!

WeAreSix Sun 20-Jan-13 18:52:44

Do it! My DBrother got over a broken relationship by going trekking in Nepal. It gave him a whole new perspective on life and he seems much happier and self confident since going.

I suspect those telling you not to go may be slightly jealous of your opportunity. Life is for living so grab the chance with both hands and don't let go smile

Euphemia Sun 20-Jan-13 18:53:05

Come on, sing with me -

# Ooh I've been to Georgia and California, oh, anywhere I could run
Took the hand of a preacherman and we made love in the sun
But I ran out of places and friendly faces because I had to be free

I've been to paradise, but I've never been to me. #

grin

kim147 Sun 20-Jan-13 18:56:32

"I got my kicks on Route 66" grin

BettySuarez Sun 20-Jan-13 18:58:03

You should do it, I'm struggling to think of anything more fantastic grin

You are single and currently without kids, so this is an opportunity that won't come way ever again for a long, long time.

What States would you like to visit?

I would recommend that you check out City Data Forum. It's broken down by State and it's populated by locals who will be more than happy to advise on best places to stay, local attractions.

You will be welcomed with open arms by our American cousins smile

Adversecamber Sun 20-Jan-13 18:59:30

The states is a great place to go and if you do some cities and towns that are less touristy they go wild for the Bitish accent. Obviously you just need to make sensible safety precautions but I see no reason why you shouldn't. I would just make sure you give yourself at least a week back home before you start the term again.

I did some hostelling in the states with my bf of the time, lots of people travelling alone so was great for going out for a bite to eat or a drink. I was late 20's at the time. Brilliant times, saw Hilary Clinton speak, went to a gospel church service, loads of museums, travelled round on trains quite a bit.

I remember chatting to a retired couple from somewhere in the Deep South, his accent was all Rhett Butler.

I recommend Boston and Chicago.

kim147 Sun 20-Jan-13 19:00:11

You are single and currently without kids, so this is an opportunity that won't come way ever again for a long, long time.

YY to that.

<looks back on 20s spent travelling, not getting on with career or relationships but lots of experiences>

Nancy66 Sun 20-Jan-13 19:00:23

You've been through a horrible time - as wanky as it sounds it will definitely help you heal and recover.

....you might even have a little harmless fling.

I'm imagining a one night stand with a cowboy or rodeo hand

Toptack Sun 20-Jan-13 19:02:47

If you're 25, def check out Trek America, I went away with them two or three times in my 20s when I was teaching and had long summer holidays, always had a fab time.

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 19:03:35

I never thought that they might be jealous. Most of my friends are smug marrieds and have just had babies. I have been so busy being jealous of them that it never crossed my mind that my crappy situation has actually opened some doors that are closed to them!
I quite fancy san Francisco, my brother went this summer and had a great time. Have been to Vegas, new York and Chicago with ex so they are on the 'avoid' list.
Can't wait to finish my lesson planning so I can do some trip planning!

Kungfutea Sun 20-Jan-13 19:05:11

Some states start back mid-August but not all. In NYC where I am, they finish end June and back first day after labor day in early September -- cant belive i ever complained about 6 weeks summer hols -- Camps here usually run through August and there are often two 4 week sessions. The op will probably miss the first session but might be able to do the second.

Yanbu op. you need to grab these experiences when you can

Kungfutea Sun 20-Jan-13 19:05:47

Oh dear, strikeout fail on iPad!

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 19:07:23

Nancy - thanks for putting a big smile on my face. Would love a nice cowboy,. Maybe I could wear his hat? :D

BettySuarez Sun 20-Jan-13 19:08:37

nancy66 I was trying to avoid mentioning the opportunity for a 'liaison' or two grin

But it's definitely something to aim for a possibility grin

blueraincoat Sun 20-Jan-13 19:09:51

envy x1000

Go, have an amazing time smile

coldinthesun Sun 20-Jan-13 19:10:22

Give me ONE GOOD reason why you should go?

What do you mean, you can't? Better go then!

(PS I've been on holiday on my own to Australia. Loads of people thought I was crazy. Strangely no one said this to the many male backpackers doing exactly the same thing).

BillyBollyDandy Sun 20-Jan-13 19:15:40

Excellent idea

One word of warning, Greyhounds are cheap for a reason. I spent 13 hours on one <shudders>

Boston amazing

If it was me I would be doing San Francisco, LA, Vegas...

envy

queenofthepirates Sun 20-Jan-13 19:19:41

I spent most of my 20s and the first half of my 30s running away from my problems, merrily globe trotting and not facing up my life at home

Best thing I could have done. I have a head full of memories, an address book full of friends and a DD 2yo but that's another story grin

RedPencils Sun 20-Jan-13 19:20:20

25, no kids, good job to come back to. Go go go

Get googling.

lljkk Sun 20-Jan-13 19:21:47

Take me with you.......

karatekimmi Sun 20-Jan-13 19:24:01

I'm a teacher and before dc I wet away for about 4-6 weeks every summer. So no YANBU
In America I travelled with a company calle trek America - small groups and they run various tours. It might be easier if you want the comfort of not having to do it all by yourself.

Climbingpenguin Sun 20-Jan-13 19:24:21

we spent four weeks travelling the bottom left corner (didn't do vegas, LA, joshua tree or canyon as had already done those). Half the time in California (yosemite, death valley, big sur, san fran, san diego) rest working our way to yellowstone and back again.

Let me know if you want a copy of our itinerary or link to the blog we did during it. Otherwise good luck and go for it. There was still stuff we had to choose not to do as there was not enough time.

AyeOopMoose Sun 20-Jan-13 19:27:41

What a GREAT opportunity! So many amazing places in America.

If you're going to San Francisco, try and get into the Sierra Nevada mountains, really beautiful.

If you're into activities go to a place called Heavenly. It's a ski resort in winter but in the summer they do mountain biking and treks that are amazing.

Also don't forget the Napa Valley for wine tasting grin

lunchbox Sun 20-Jan-13 19:27:42

I did 4 wks coast to coast about 8 years ago, was the most fun I ever had!
I went with a company called trek America, met up with 12 strangers, a driver and a minivan and headed off across America. Made some really good friends, discovered a love of camping, and had the time of my life!

Do it, you'll regret it if you don't!

Climbingpenguin Sun 20-Jan-13 19:27:54

Otherwise there you can ride the Moose in Canada if you want to Vancouver and the Rockies, that was a good way of travelling alone.

you travel in a mini bus and fee includes the hostel stays. If you want to get off somewhere for a few days you then hop when another bus rides through. You just ring the office to let them know what you are doing.

susanann Sun 20-Jan-13 19:32:00

Cant think of a reason for you not to go to be honest! If you can afford it then go for it! Have a brilliant time!

foslady Sun 20-Jan-13 19:34:08

Book a ticket BUT put Foslady as the name on it - you're a teacher , I'd trust you with dd for a month!!!! grin

Pandemoniaa Sun 20-Jan-13 19:36:06

Go for it, OP. You'll have a great time!

I recommend Seattle and the Northwest myself - Portland and the Oregon coast is fabulous and then you could mosey on down to S.Francisco. The South West is interesting too - New Mexico is well worth a visit. ds1 spent 6 months travelling in the USA the other year. He cycled down the Pacific coastline from Vancouver to San Diego, fell in love on the way and is now happily engaged to his American fiance. He had a fantastic time and in my travels in the USA, I've met nothing but friendliness too.

But I'd not recommend using a Greyhound. It might be a way to see the "real USA" but in there's reality and then there is the horror that can be a Greyhound bus.

Dysgu Sun 20-Jan-13 19:36:53

Another vote here for TrekAmerica - I did the 4 week coast to coast aaaaages ago and had a great time. If you get a great guide/driver like we did, you can adapt the itinerary according to the wishes of the people on the trip.

I have also done Greyhound - would struggle to do it now (at the ancient age of 40) but when I was 23 it was a fabulous was to travel. Yes it is cheap and the only people who use the greyhound are travellers and poor people but I still had a great time. If you opt for Greyhound, buy you Ameripass in this country before you go. this book is a good read too but quite old now so not sure how much things have changed.

I am also a teacher and feeling rather envious of you having the summer holidays stretched out ahead of you with so many exciting plans to consider. I am just waiting until DCs are all old enough (DC3 not even born yet!) so we can all head off to Europe together for 4 weeks each summer and see where we end up...

Good luck

Dysgu Sun 20-Jan-13 19:39:33

Just beware - I loved it so much as 23 that I have since spent two separate times living and working in the USA - and would move back to either Boston or San Francisco or Seattle straight away!

Something else to consider but you would need to get your school on board and it takes more planning but this teacher exchange programme was a fabulous year for me too!

SoftKittyWarmKitty Sun 20-Jan-13 19:41:34

Go, go, go!

If I didn't have DS that's so something I'd love to do, even though I'm 15 years older than you grin. I love my own company and really regret never travelling/going on holiday alone, so my plan is to do a big solo trip when DS is an adult. He's only 6 so at least I've got lots of time to save!

Agree that the naysayers are just jealous. Go and enjoy yourself. It'll be the making of you. Don't forget to come back after and let us know how you got on smile.

Nuttybiscuits Sun 20-Jan-13 19:42:31

Hi - sorry you've been through such a shitty time. Just wanted to add my two pennies worth. A few years ago, my ex left me very suddenly. I had always wanted to plan an exciting holiday with him, but he was having none of it. So within days of him leaving, I thought sod it, I'm going to do something amazing.

2 Weeks later, I was kayaking with killer whales in Canada. Best thing ever. Planning the trip really helped to take my mind off things, I felt empowered, excited at doing something for myself, and the excitement of looking forward to the trip really cheered me up. Trip itself was fabulous, and people were so impressed with me being strong and striking out alone (I had actually travelled alone quite a bit before anyway). It really felt like therapy, and I felt like I left a lot of the sadness behind me and moved on smile

Travelling alone in America will be fine. Enjoy every minute of your planning, and the run up to it. It will be the making of you.

StrawberryMojito Sun 20-Jan-13 19:42:55

I spent 3 weeks travelling down the western states of US when I was 20, it was amazing, one of the best holidays I've ever been on. I am totally jealous.

I recommend San Francisco (but book in advance of your trip if you want to do a tour of Alcatraz, it books up quickly), Yosemite is stunning as is Yellowstone, California is fab generally. Jackson Hole in Wyoming is pretty cool and you can go to a rodeo. I wouldnt go to US though without seeing New York (which I did on a separate trip)...maybe a friend could meet you there for a mini break?

gimmecakeandcandy Sun 20-Jan-13 19:43:55

Go! I would say do something like trekamerica too though just so you have planned things to do and people in the same situation?

But one thing... You had better update us on your return ok? I want to know all about it - and if you meet a handsome American! wink

curlywurl Sun 20-Jan-13 19:44:44

Have a look at www.greentortoise.com
I did a trip from New York to sanfrancisco it was brilliant

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 19:59:38

I am positively hopping with enthusiasm after all these positive comments. I can't wait to get researching. I haven't smiled so much for a while!
I can report back to all the naysayers that not one wise mumsnetter thought it was a bad idea! Thanks for all the encouragement. Thinking about it makes me feel like I have a whole new world ahead of me. I hope I can leave some of my sadness in America and bring back some amazing memories.
Maybe I could go Hollywood and shack up with a lovely movie star? A girl can dream....

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 20:03:31

I am positively hopping with enthusiasm after all these positive comments. I can't wait to get researching. I haven't smiled so much for a while!
I can report back to all the naysayers that not one wise mumsnetter thought it was a bad idea! Thanks for all the encouragement. Thinking about it makes me feel like I have a whole new world ahead of me. I hope I can leave some of my sadness in America and bring back some amazing memories.
Maybe I could go Hollywood and shack up with a lovely movie star? A girl can dream....

susanann Sun 20-Jan-13 20:11:20

youre so excited you posted twice! lol. Good for you x

Worley Sun 20-Jan-13 20:11:49

ooooh I havnt read all of thread but you should go!! if I could have done that I would have after leaving the cheating ex!
Colorado is brilliant.. Denver, Vail, Beaver Creek smile I want to go back once ds's have flown the nest.

megglevache Sun 20-Jan-13 20:13:05

GO!!!!!!

Worley Sun 20-Jan-13 20:15:35

actually... can you do the trek America with dc? (14&6)...

LadyBeagleEyes Sun 20-Jan-13 20:24:45

Oh and I agree with whoever said the planning is as exciting as the trip itself.
You'll be online every night now looking for the best places, researching accommodation etc.
I'm so jealous.

Teahouse Sun 20-Jan-13 20:36:29

Go...I am so jealous,
Just spent 2 weeks alone in Chile...at least there aren't language difficulties in the states.
Take a book to read in restaurants, and a guide book for ideas on where to go.
You will have a blast...can I come? smile

squeakytoy Sun 20-Jan-13 20:40:01

go to LA and travel your way up the Pacific Coast Highway to San Francisco.. It is a fabulous trip.

fallon8 Sun 20-Jan-13 20:46:17

Go for it and book it NOW,then you can't back out....doubt if ex would think twice about it,but might make him realise what a trot he has been

AViewfromtheFridge Sun 20-Jan-13 20:48:11

This website might be worth a look. Go, go, go!

Skinnywhippet Sun 20-Jan-13 20:51:55

I want to do this but husband doesn't have the luxury of long holidays like me. Think I will def go next summer as busy this year. If you want to do it again pm me!

VivaLeBeaver Sun 20-Jan-13 20:53:36

Sounds amazing. Do it. Don't think it, just book tickets!

kim147 Sun 20-Jan-13 20:58:24

I'd love to see small town America. I went when I was 20 but had an airpass so spent most of my time in the big cities.

I've just got such an impression from TV and films of small town mid West USA. Sitting in a diner or going to a Country and Western bar.

I'm a teacher - but would miss DS for 4 weeks. He'd also be seriously jealous.

Have you booked the tickets yet?

RedPencils Sun 20-Jan-13 20:59:06

Buy one of those huge maps and put it up on your bedroom wall. Put pins into all the places you want to go to. You'll go to sleep dreaming of your amazing adventure not your knobber ex.

You could do a tour holiday, my Mum and her friend did one last October. It started in Los Angeles, went to San Diego, Arizona, Sedona, Grand Canyon, Las Vegas, and ended up in San Francisco where I et up with them and we went to Alcatraz and toured Downtown shopping and eating. They had a great time and I was surprised it didn't cost more. You go off on your own in each area once you arrive, the hotels are all pre booked and you can see as much or little as you feel like.

SirBoobAlot Sun 20-Jan-13 21:04:13

Book it this instant and do not think twice.

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 21:07:07

Right, I have finished my work for the evening so I am about to embark on some serious internet based research, exciting!
Good idea red - looking to the future not the past now!
Am just watching dancing on ice from earlier. Seeing lovely Gareth in his cowboy outfit is making me smile after earlier comments! :D

BettySuarez Sun 20-Jan-13 21:07:10

Give yourself a target of one week to decide which area you will explore. Then book your flights!!!! Don't over think it, just do it!

You mentioned San Francisco, which I think is an excellent choice.

From there you can explore the National Parks and the coastal areas. So much to do grin

If you get shacked up with some dot com billionaire and decide to stay then we will come and say hi when we come for our hols in November blush

SamuelWestsMistress Sun 20-Jan-13 21:08:11

Life is too short not to act upon spontaneous decisions like this when its something you know you want to do. Bugger what anyone else thinks! This is your life not theirs.

soaccidentprone Sun 20-Jan-13 21:28:15

if you don't do it now then things we will change and you may not get this kind of opportunity again.

go for it, and doesn't forget to sort out your visa. you can do this online now and I think it takes a few hours.

I am so jealous grin

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 21:47:34

Have just ordered my trek America brochure!!!!

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 21:50:27

Go girl!!!

Bogeyface Sun 20-Jan-13 21:53:10

Its a bloody marvellous idea!

Maybe "not like you" is exactly what you need now!

Bogeyface Sun 20-Jan-13 21:55:45

I read a really good metaphor for not getting above yourself or changing the status quo.

I dont know if you read Terry Pratchett but in one of his books he refers to it as "crab pot". If crabs are in a pot with no lid and one starts to climb out, the others will pull it back in. Thats what people who are too scared to live their own lives do to people like you, who want to get out there and do something different. It scares them because if you can do it then it shows their own lack of courage and ambition, so they try to pull you back into the crab pot with them.

Remember that whenever you encounter a naysayer - "Crab pot"! smile

foosty Sun 20-Jan-13 22:05:12

Def do it

I travelled in Oz when I was 24 - actually went with then boyfriend, we broke up after a couple of month and I went on to have the best year of my life

Am pining for its sunshine just now!

Second looking at Trek America or similar. If I was you, I'd book a 7/10 day trip with them, then have a rough plan in place that you can change at any time - ie don't book hotels etc for after the tour - you are very likely to meet a bunch of folk and might want to do what they're doing!

also, I'd book an open-ended ticket so if you want to stay longer you can change your date - there might be a small fee for this but it's sometimes free and worth it for the flexibilty

I'd strongly advise going to STA Travel or Trailfinders and talking to them about this. They are all travellers and will have great advice for you, and can book your flight, organise your tours etc. I say that as a former STA travel agent - I LOVED my job and it was always exciting helping fellow travellers plan their trips.

you won't regret it.

ConferencePear Sun 20-Jan-13 22:05:29

I wonder if you belong to any group that has connections with the USA ? Your old college perhaps ? A church group ?
I was astonished by the friendliness and hospitality I received in the States although I was on a more organised visit than you are planning.

whyisthepathsounclear Sun 20-Jan-13 22:26:23

Bogey - I will remember that! I can think of a few other occasions I could have used it in the past!

Foosty - great advice thank you.

I think a 10 day trip would be a great start and then could move on elsewhere. I think being flexible is a good idea. Might be ready to come home by then!

suburbophobe Sun 20-Jan-13 22:34:42

Sad and lonely is normal after the end of a relationship/marriage that mattered.

But you got out of a bad situation, so good for you!

And yes, go for it. USA. (LP, travel junkie too grin)

Don't bother with all those nay-sayers. They're just jealous and/or paranoid...

They would love to do it themselves anyway!

MarianForrester Sun 20-Jan-13 22:42:52

YABNBU! In fact you would be unreasonable not to do it.

Have a fabulous time; this is such a great opportunity.

Bogeyface Mon 21-Jan-13 00:27:23

why it was in Unseen Academicals. The narrative is based on the invention of "modern" (disworld) football, but the main story is about a woman called Glenda escaping her own "crab pot". Even if you aren't into fantasy fiction, I recommend you read it smile

Bogeyface Mon 21-Jan-13 00:28:59

Discworld, not disworld!

mameulah Mon 21-Jan-13 00:34:58

I am a teacher too and I totally get it. I am married now with a pfb but before my two boys came alone I almost dreaded the holidays. You will have a wonderful time if you go for an adventure. Enjoy every second. And I agree with all the posts that say look for a job overseas. I taught overseas on the international circuit for five years, in three different countries. If you go about it properly you could get a REALLY BIG salary and wonderful experiences. If you personal message me (or whatever it is called) then I can tell you more about how to go about it.

stottie Mon 21-Jan-13 01:18:15

Yes travel around the USA wonderful places to see but please don't do it with Greyhound that would be a nightmare take it from someone who lives here and in the Uk.

sashh Mon 21-Jan-13 03:37:01

Do it.

But try South America as well.

ben5 Mon 21-Jan-13 03:51:43

America is great. I travelled around by 'Greyhound' and yes cheap but an experance:-) I was 18 at the time. I went to Chaigo, toronto, nigra falls, Boston, Cape Cod and New York. Had a great time.
My only concern for you is that you are going to America! I think you should come and visit ll us MN in australia!!! Theres room here for a couple of nights I'm not far from Perth!!

50pcoff Mon 21-Jan-13 04:17:35

I did a trek America tour 25 years ago can't believe the same tour still exists after all this time

www.trekamerica.co.uk/tours/mts.html

They are a lot of driving, but someone else is doing it for you. Highlights for me was sleeping in the open at monument valley, I still have jewellery I bought on the side of the road. You finish in San Francisco so good for more sight seeing

Good luck, in years to come you don't want to look back at the things you could have done, but the things you did.

KeatsiePie Mon 21-Jan-13 05:57:26

Definitely you should go! Good for you for thinking of something special to do for yourself. I'm sorry you have had such a crummy time.

Ps. I'm American and have lived/travelled in a number of places here if you have questions.

whyisthepathsounclear Thu 24-Jan-13 18:47:19

My trek America brochure has arrived! So excited to have a really good lookout it. Had a quick flick and it looks awesome. Choosing my trip's about the only decision I have to make now. I realised at work today that I had already mentally decided I was going to go!

Euphemia Thu 24-Jan-13 18:49:35

envy

I'll come too in about 12 years, once DD is grown up!

Dysgu Thu 24-Jan-13 19:03:07

That is fabulous - feeling a touch jealous (but then, a scary fact that DD1 is as far away from being the age I was when I did my TrekAmerica as I am past it IYKWIM!!) so if either of us is going to be doing a Trek ten it is much more likely to be her!

So which trip's are you considering? I did the coast to coast from NYC to SF via via the south.

Highlights - pouring with rain on the first night so, instead of going to the designated campsite, our driver booked us a motel room (but only 2 interconnetced rooms, one bathroom and bed space for 6 if we shared in pairs!) 6 of people carried in the luggage, we drew straws for the beds and REALLY knew each other by the morning as there were 14 of us and we basically crashed wherever there was space!

Also, bare back riding in Arizona with friends of the driver.

Sleeping under the stars in Zion National Park in Utah.

Skydiving in the desert outside Las Vegas, Nevada.

SotB grin in Florida and elsewhere with the driver!!!

New Orleans, San Franscisco - I could go on and on and on......

Just consider that the brochure price is not QUITE the full cost even with flights added on. you have to pay some cash into the kitty and then you tip the driver a chunk too.

I had done Summer Camp as had about half the people on my trip. Others had flown out especially for the trip. From memory there were Brits, Aussies, Israelis, Japanese, and I think someone from NZ along with the American driver.

Megglevache Thu 24-Jan-13 19:05:48

Wow,exciting times ahead.

Andcake Thu 24-Jan-13 19:10:33

Some of my best memories of my time between dv from evil exh and current DP (with whom I have lovely ds) are my travels. Go go go and once you've gone to the usa try somewhere more adventurous. As well as camp america I also found company's like explore and exodus a brilliant way to travel as a lone woman and make new friends. The world is your oyster and you'll get your confidence back. Travel companies are a great way to relieve worried parents about the risks to a woman alone. A bit jealous tbh I wish I'd known then that my heart would mend and I would have current DP & ds :-)

blobandsnail Thu 24-Jan-13 19:26:49

I travel on my own a lot. Actually for all but one trip i've been on my own. It's perfectly safe and enjoyable. However even now when i've been doing this for years people still express shock and concern when i say i'm going alone. Ignore them, people will tell you horror stories and try and put you off but i can pretty much guarentee none of these people will have ever travelled alone, or probably even travelled anywhere remotely interesting.

If you are travelling alone a few tips to make it safe and enjoyable. Have a mobile phone with you at all times. If you have a smart phone install something like viber or skype on it. Free wifi is everywhere so it saves on cost. Make sure someone at home knows roughly where you're going and agree times to contact them. I usually use my parents and say i'll be in contact with them in some way once every 3 - 4 days. This is sometimes a phone call but more often an email just saying 'hi i'm alive and at x' I tend to do this more for others peace of mind than my own and it's not too difficult to do so if it saves them panicking and me enjoying myself its worth the hassle. Also leave copies of your insurance documents and passport with someone at home. When travelling alone you don't have someone near you to pass such things over to people if something does happen. I also always carry these with me when out and about so if something does happen i'll be okay.

Next tip is youth hostel! Do it! HI hostels in the USA are all over and there's a lot of independents in big cities. It's an excellent way to meet people. I've made some amazing friends in hostel rooms. Don't be shy to go out for a drink with them, or even spend the odd day with them. You may even meet someone to travel for a couple of days with - will save on fuel costs if you drive. I know as you get older it gets tempting to have some creature comforts and stay in a motel or in a single room, but for a few nights get out of the comfort zone and hang out with others. Hostels are not full of 18 year olds. I'm 28 and sleep in hostels, In NZ i shared a room with a 65 year old woman. They're full of interesting random people and its nice to chat to others. Plus it'll save you some money.

There's also websites where you can meet people doing similar trips to you, might be worth a look, or ask around your friends and see if anyone wants to join you for a couple of weeks. As much as i love travelling alone, sometimes it is nice to share experiences with others and if you're going away for 6 weeks or so over the summer maybe one of your friends would like to join you for 2 weeks or even a week. It doesn't make it any less exciting or adventurous it actually adds to the experience - sometimes at least!

YellowTulips Thu 24-Jan-13 19:41:50

Struggling to see the downside here.....go for it and tell us all about your advantures on a new thread when you get back :-)

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Thu 24-Jan-13 19:47:09

I concur with everyone else, you'll have the time of your life. I did it when I was 24, buggered off to New Zealand for 4 weeks on my own, never having done anything like it before and it was amazing. I can remember so clearly sitting in the airport waiting for my flight thinking WTF am I doing? That fear was like nothing else but it made the whole experience even better 'cos the realisation that there was no reason to be afraid once I'd landed and found my feet. I did have to wait 2 days for my luggage as it went AWOL and I'd nothing to change into do had to figure out where to get underwear and some clean clothes instead of just sightseeing.

I hope you keep posting, all the planning, the count down and then the adventure holiday itself. I want to live vicariously through you!

Of course you should go. grin

Have a brilliant time!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now