One of the more awful places to be unhappy is beautiful islands in the sun. It is just so much harder to justify. In addition to whatever circumstances may be causing this bout of gloom, there is the guilt associated with not fully enjoying one’s surroundings (and everyone around you seems to be thrilled with their present existence!).

Loneliness is one of the hardest things to admit to. There’s such a stigma attached to needing people and struggling to make besties everywhere you go. The meaningful connections I’ve made on this trip have been few and far between. I would be rather be alone reading than engaging in the same played- out backpacker conversations (Where are you from? How long have you been here? What do you do back home?).

I had hoped to re-create my last summer in Europe, but now realize the concept was flawed from the get-go. I am older, the circumstances are different (no Colombian lover to hold my hand as we jumped between Balkan nations), and it is time to establish a new adventure model. Perhaps it is also time to find a longterm adventure partner.

I’m counting down the days until my return to the states. Three more until I can hide away in a room of my own and not be expected to be having the time of my life. I can’t wait.

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