Guest Post: Zaina Brown
Crossing a border into someplace new always gave me a jolt of excitement. That first impression could be warm like a hug, polite like a handshake, or rude like a middle finger. Somaliland, however, felt like a punch in the face. Was this whole trip a big mistake? For the first time in my life, I considered flat-out giving up on a country – and it hadn’t even been 24 hours.
This has been one of my favourite media interviews so far!
In the run-up to ZafigoX 2018 of which I was a speaker, I was interviewed on radio station BFM89.9. It was for a show called HerVantage, a weekly segment focusing on women of leadership and influence in all strata of society.
What’s more intimidating than giving a speech?
Sharing a stage with some seriously amazing women travelers, the kind who’ve scaled the highest mountains, biked solo across the globe or still travelling at age 75! Wish me luck guys, because I’ll be speaking at ZafigoX 2018!
“YOU WANT TO DO WHAT!?”
Mom freaked out the first time I told her I wanted to backpack solo. Sem break was coming up and I was dreaming of going to Sabah for two short weeks. But that was not going to happen.
It’s flattering to be a woman travelling in Jordan. Everywhere I went – whether walking along the streets or having dinner at a restaurant on my own – friendly local men would come up to me and welcome me to their country.
Throw your insecurities out the window. It is not weird to go to a gig, or a concert, or a music festival alone.
“STOP THE CAR!” I scream with all the air in my lungs. “STOP! LET ME OUT NOW!”
“Mei, are you okay? You look sad.”
“Mei, why are you angry?”
“Mei, my intern is scared of you. She says you look fierce.”
They say travelling in Sri Lanka is the safer, easier version of risky India. Camilla, a Brazilian girl whom I met one night in this little island ferociously nodded at how true this statement was as she had just spent six months in India on her own.