After two weeks of traveling together (which feels like years when you're in travel-mode) it was time to say goodbye to my four wonderful travel mates.
I think that traveling alone is one of the best things you can do but spending longer periods of time with other travelers you meet can be a welcome change of pace. It means having inside jokes, bus and boat journeys become hilarious rather than tedious, getting lost doesn't seem as scary, there is someone to watch your bags when you have to pee in a train station, you might get the courage to try something you wouldn't have on your own... the list goes on and on.
While there are many positives to traveling with others, for me there is still something extremely rewarding about traveling all by yourself. Whether I'm navigating my way through a new city, going through a particularly difficult border crossing or trying to explain myself in a foreign language, I get satisfaction out of knowing I was able to do it without anyone else's help. I don't know if that makes me more stubborn or independent but I like proving to myself that I can do it on my own, whatever "it" may be.
I know I would have had a good time in Vietnam no matter what but meeting these four definitely made it unforgettable.
I'm beyond bummed to have said goodbye to my new các bạn (friends) but I'm also looking forward to the challenge of being on my own again!