Right now, my son is showing me his latest wrestling moved that he has remixed with moves of his own. He’s using the sofa in my bedroom to give him a little leverage to perform it. I’d usually fuss and suggest he’d find something to do than tear up my stuff, like my grandma used to do, but my mind has drifted. Drifted back to last weekend that I spent in another country. I didn’t plan it. I was just sitting at my desk one day lurking the map online and found it. Grand Cayman.

I decided to stay in West Bay — an area mostly populated by locals and mostly shunned by the tourists and vacationers. I wanted to get a chance to live as a local would for the 72 hours that I would be a Caymanian. Although away from the heavily populated area known as Georgetown, West Bay still had a lot to offer when it came to food and activities.

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Grand Cayman was so peaceful. And the sunrises were peaceful as well.. and extremely gorgeous. I think my favorite part was hearing all of the roosters crowing in the mornings. That gave a new meaning to the saying “Up with the roosters.” as my grandmother would say. In GC, they generally roam around freely along with iguanas and dogs. Sunrises on the beach were pretty dope too.

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There were intermittent rainshowers while I was there. They were tranquil showers, sort of like the ones I remember my mom asking God to bless her garden with when the summers were extremely hot. I appreciated them. Maybe because they reminded me of my mother. Or because the sun shone while the showers occurred. Or perhaps because after every shower, there was a rainbow. I’m not sure how often this happens, but I’m grateful I got to experience it the entire time I was there.

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But I think what was even more amazing to see were the sunsets. It brought the perfect end to the day. I was fortunate enough to be able to view the sunset while on the water. I’m not sure what I love so much about being around water, but I am literally drawn to it. I feel as if I’m humbled in a way that I’m not sure I can explain. And that feeling is something I hold in great regard.

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A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes

It was a short, but fulfilling getaway spent on a small island filled with so much culture and heritage every direction there is to look. This was my first time traveling out of the country alone, but it was something I felt I needed to do. Something I wanted to do. I guess a part of me just really didn’t feel like scrolling through my contacts and wasting time soliciting travel partners who always pull out in the end. I wasn’t for it. In the future I’d love to bring my kids here. I think it’s perfect for their first international experience. Once my daughter gets over her fear of planes. :Sigh:

I’ll put together a travel guide on how to spend a weekend in Grand Cayman soon enough, but for right now, I’m still in reminiscent mode. This trip really did something to me. Perhaps it was the fact that traveling solo removed so much fear from so many different aspects of my life and replaced the void with confidence. Confidence that enforces me to rely on myself. To trust myself. To just go with the flow and go. I see so many more solo trips in my future it’s unreal.

Have you ever traveled solo? Where? If you’ve never traveled solo, what is preventing you from doing so?

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11 Comments
  1. Valla

    June 6, 2016 at 2:56 am

    I’m so ready to travel outside the states myself solo. Hopefully I’ll get that chance later on this year but if not, I’m definitely making plans for this happen next year. These are beautiful pictures by the way.

  2. Amanda Nicole

    June 6, 2016 at 2:44 pm

    I need to travel solo. I’m going to DC next month and that will be my first solo trip. But internationally I am working on. Not that I have a fear of traveling alone but friends here you say things, they invite themselves and ruin my trip. LOL. I’m learning to do things on my own now. It takes time.

    I love the idea of not being a tourist and staying in the not so “popular” areas. My parents home in JA had rosters around. It was refreshing hearing them in the morning. I miss watching the sunrise, light rain, and a cup of tea on the patio. AMAZING.

  3. Vaneese

    June 6, 2016 at 6:13 pm

    Your pictures are gorgeous and Grand Cayman looks so tranquil. I’ve never traveled internationally by myself, but I have traveled locally alone. A couple of years ago, I drove from Omaha to San Antonio, TX and it was quite the experience. I felt so accomplished, having done it all by myself. Traveling alone, especially internationally, is such a confidence boost. So glad you enjoyed your trip!

    1. Rae

      June 6, 2016 at 6:21 pm

      Omaha to San Antonio? How long of a drive was that? I bet that was very interesting!

  4. mimi

    June 6, 2016 at 9:10 pm

    I have never traveled out of the country solo but everyone I know that has said it is an experience to do. It is on my bucket list. Glad you had a great time.

  5. Bee L

    June 7, 2016 at 12:06 pm

    I learned to love the company of me, myself and I a long time ago so I have taken quite a few solo trips in my lifetime and I have loved every single one of them. San Francisco had to have been my favorite as I spent 4 days visiting the neighborhoods and taking in all the sights and sounds. Best trip ever. I also took a day trip to Philly once while visiting NYC and it was amazing too. I am loving your travel posts and I am always in awe of you; your strength, intelligence and resilience. If you ever visit Houston, I will love to meet up!

    1. Rae

      June 7, 2016 at 7:17 pm

      And thank you for virtually being with me along my journey. (:

      I’m actually trying to decide on when I can visit Houston some time this month or perhaps in August. So, I’ll definitely hit you up when I make it there. Considering Baton Rouge is so close to Houston, I’ve never been. And don’t you dare judge me boo. LOL!

  6. Lauren

    June 9, 2016 at 10:07 am

    WOW it looks amazing! Those sunsets/rises *drools*

  7. Law_Fal

    June 13, 2016 at 8:57 am

    I had no idea you went solo!! I keep saying I may do the solo thing for my birthday in November but I can’t shake the idea of a boo 35th vacation with bae. But then I would need to find a bae and boo him up real quick since you know it’s already June lmao! Now you got me plotting and playing on this computer looking at deals instead of working lol!

    1. Rae

      June 18, 2016 at 1:25 pm

      LOL! Baecations are cool so I totally feel where you’re coming from. I have a baecation coming up for my birthday in July.

  8. Cece

    June 16, 2016 at 11:19 am

    What a wonderful time for yourself. So good for the soul. I think it’s awesome that you went solo. For me, not going solo in the past was always a combination of fear and lack of funds. Now, it’s because I travel with the husband, which is great and wonderful. I would like to experience solo travel some day though.

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