People the world over have much in common. I was reminded of this after watching a video called Where the Hell is Matt? and thinking about the time I played peek-a-boo with a young Thai child.
I was hiking in the hill tribe area. Foreigners are still a novelty there and people came out of their huts to gawk at us shyly. One little boy, wearing a hoodie and nothing else was looking at me, so I started covering and uncovering my eyes and saying "boo."
He started laughing with a really infectious giggle. His mother turned to see what was going on and then she started giggling when she saw us playing. I was delighted to see that peek-a-boo has the same effect on kids in Thailand as it does in the U.S.
Today, I watched the Where the Hell is Matt video. My office has an interior window that people walk by. I think people looked in at me wondering why I had a big smile on my face while sitting alone at work. Watch the video and you'll understand why.
Matt travels all over, doing a goofy dance. Alone. And with others. People everywhere, young and old, respond with joy to the antics. And the joy is totally contagious. You'll wish you were
in any of those places on the video, dancing with Matt. Matt! You're awesome, dude! That's what many viewers have said.
How does this apply to solo travel?
So many people shy away from setting out solo out of fear of the unknown. They think, "What are 'those people' like over there?"
"Is it safe?" "Will I stand out?"
My advice for you if:
You're feeling nervous about setting out solo...
You're worried about how the people of some exotic country are going to treat you...
You have doubts about how you'll get around and who will help you if things go awry...
You're wondering how you'll have fun when you're a stranger in a strange land...
You think you'll enjoy yourself just as much if you stay home and hang out, and skip the trip altogether until a travel buddy comes along...
You're about to give up a great trip, weakened by anxiety or lethargy or fear...
You must remember Matt.
Look who he pulled into his orbit from such a range of countries. Wow. It made me
laugh and it made me want to dance.
And it showed that people around the world are more like us than they are different. Go see for yourself.