Penny's Travels

“So Little Time, So Much To Do” – Dust Off Your Backpack!

Do you remember those travel dreams you had when you were young?

Hopefully, you were able to fulfill many of them and have some wonderful memories of holidaying on the Greek Islands or shopping at Harrods in London. For many women, they think their travel dreams are over, just because they hit the “magic 60 mark”

P1030752.JPGWomen like to travel for several reasons: memories, adventure, romance, or just to connect with other people and better understand humanity. I travel because I love to learn and have fun experiences.

As you age, you start to understand there is “so little time but so much to do” and being an “older” female has some restrictions often placed on us by society and family.
It is about time that we start to think of ourselves as being an inspiration to others, not only to women of our generation but to our daughters and granddaughters. I like to think of myself as a stylish, strong, savvy and smart, mature woman and with a little planning, I can do just about as much as I did when I was an 18-year-old gap student who set out to see the world.

Women like to travel for several reasons: memories, adventure, romance, or just to connect with other people and better understand humanity. I travel because I love to learn and have fun experiences.
Travelling with someone you get along with is wonderful, but let’s face it: Mr Wonderful may not have the desire, time or money to travel with you!

I am always surprised at the comments I receive from friends who want to travel, but feel they are unable to: school, jobs, commitments, husbands, children, cats and dogs, no one to go with etc. Each friend indicating, “I wish I could BUT…”
Why then, do the women I meet at the airport or on the road all say, “I wish I had done this years ago”?

The solution is pretty simple. The most important thing you have to do is take that initial step and say, “I am going to travel, I may have to travel by myself, but I will do this”. Your trip does not have to mean going on a long, extended overseas holiday; it can be something short and within your area at first, but you have to get used to the idea that unless you make it happen, it will not happen. There is no time like the present and remember, “so many things to do and so little time left”. If you know you may get some resistance from loved ones, start out by saying, “I want to go on a vacation, I would love to see…”

Ask your family about places they have been and get them involved in selecting something with you. Most people who have not travelled only see the outside world via the news on TV, and for that item to be broadcast-worthy, it most often involves bad news. But keep in mind, the chances of something tragic happening while you are on your trip are pretty slim, especially when you consider how may solo people are traveling every day around the world.
Be strong and don’t waiver. Going to school on the first day was pretty hard too, but we all managed to complete that part of our lives. Consider making the decision to travel, to be another part of life’s journey.
There will be times when your heart nearly jumps out of your chest, but most times it will be because you got to see, The Grand Canyon, The Eiffel Tower in Paris, or the Coliseum in Rome.

I remember learning about Egypt as a small child at one teacher school in outback New South Wales. I tried to imagine how big the Pyramids would be compared to the large old, gum trees outside the schoolhouse window and got into trouble for not paying attention in class. My dream was to one day travel the world and sit on one of those big rocks that made up the Pyramids in Egypt. I had so much to do and heaps of time on my side. When I did get to sit on one of those big rocks, I thought back to my time at school and said to myself:
“If I can do this then anyone can!”

So make it happen now, there’s so little time, so much to do!

About Penny Frederiksen

Penny enjoys writing for a variety of blogs and magazines where she hopes to inspire readers to travel and explore the world. She is a regular contributor to publications in Russia, The United Kingdom, and South East Asia. Penny lives in rural Australia and her love affair with travel and photography started at a very young age..the National Geographic Magazines at her local dentist! ” I loved the wonderful stories and photographs – they brought history and culture alive.” Penny’s independent, solo travel started about 10 years ago when she realized all her friends had no interest in photography and getting into the backstreets and villages of Asia. She enjoys traveling to exotic locations each year both on photography tours and by herself, showing other women that with planning and confidence, they too can visit worldly destinations on their own. Some of her most recent destinations include Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Vietnam, UAE, Turkey, India, Nepal, and Myanmar. “Travel makes me step outside my comfort zone and get a better perspective of the world around me”

16 thoughts on ““So Little Time, So Much To Do” – Dust Off Your Backpack!”

  1. You are so right. I am 60+ and travel solo, often on long trips overseas.

    It is much easier than most imagine. Much easier than going with an incompatible companion.

    I have had so many wonderful chance encounters that would not have happened if I had been with another person.

    I hope some take notice of your great post.

    • You are so right!
      Those “chance encounters” remain the highlights of my trips. On a recent trip to Sri Lanka, we were invited by a Buddhist Monk to share his breakfast.That simple breakfast, prepared by the village women, changed my life in more ways then one.
      Thank you so much for your kind comments.

  2. Thanks for a great and inspiring article Penny and for your comment Bmpermie.

    I am on the cusp and I’m starting to see a theme, start close. I think I’ll start by taking a couple of trips to neighboring Canada by myself, then I’ll expand to places where I have friends – Sweden, Hong Kong and Japan, my friends can show me around a bit then I jaunt off on my own. What a great way to get my feet wet.

    I think traveling alone may be best, you’re not confined to another person’s schedule and it can open you up to more opportunities, One trip to Hawaii I was able to get a deeply discounted helicopter ride because I was a single.

    I’m going to share your article with my daughter who is thinking it may be time to start a family, maybe she’ll get one or two trips in before she becomes a mom.

    Thank you so much for the encouraging and inspiring words. Great words of wisdom.

    • Thank you for your lovely comments Lee. I think your intensions of taking your first trip to neighbouring Canada is a good idea and then start to venture a little further afield once you have gained confidence. My friend, Nathan Lake, also from The Travel Writers, has written an excellent article which deals with decision making. I am not going to tell you that making that first decision to travel by yourself is an easy one but when you want something badly, you really have to be prepared to change a few things in your life. Sometimes, “The only person holding you back is yourself.” Best wishes Lee and have a wonderful holiday in Canada.

  3. This is an inspiring article! I have for various reasons waited until my “middle age” to travel. A lot of fear held me back and now that I am traveling, it is really liberating. I have a family and my husband’s job and money hold us back some, but my son and I have gone by ourselves to Disney World which is for me a start and now we have traveled to Great Britain and Hawaii with other trips coming up. I am glad you are brave enough to travel. Great story!

    • To be quite honest Elaine I was really scared of traveling solo, especially to Vietnam but more scared of the fact that I did not want to die with the music still in me.I am always planning ahead,just like you…one day at a time and one trip at a time!

  4. I totally agree. Stop making excuses and just do it!

  5. I think that this is true for men also. I have been travelling solo for many years but whenever i return to England people are always asking me how i am able to travel as i do. I always reply that i choose to. Some people are into luxury cars, big houses etc but i choose to live simply and travel as often as i can.
    Also by travelling solo you meet so many backpackers/travellers of all ages that you are never alone unless you choose to be.

  6. I don’t think of it as so little time. My girls are almost grown, and we will be empty nesters for a year, so we will suddenly have so much time for travel. I am still in my 50s. I wonder if I will feel differently in a few years.

    • Thanks Rhonda for your thoughts. Within the past 2 years a couple of my very dear friends have developed medical conditions which means they are not able to travel – just when their children were leaving the nest. Most of their time is now taken up with endless medical appointments and hoping they will see next Christmas. I suppose I was thinking of them when I wrote this article.

  7. “…so many things to do and so little time left…” that’s so true Penny! I loved your article and can relate to it. If I look back and see how much I have been able to do and see over the years because I chose to travel alone and do things on my own. It’s very much about a mental and spiritual attitude that help you make things happen; once you achieve it then you will see things clearer, there are no more excuses like family, jobs, kids, husbands and so on to hold you back from travelling and making meaningful life experiences. Thanks for sharing this great article!

  8. I’m not 60 yet, but I feel the pressure of time going by already. About 9 years ago I took the leap to travel on my own and have never looked back. Best thing I’ve ever done for myself. Now, I’m starting to feel a bit tired and wishing for a partner, sometimes. 🙂 That doesn’t mean I’m not going to travel without one!

    • I know what you mean Penny – Having a wonderful travel partner is just the best…someone to share those travel moments, both good and bad.

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