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Beginnings in Beirut: A (Long-Term) Onely Adventure June 5, 2011

Posted by Onely in Secret Lives of the Happily Single, single and happy, solo travel.
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To Our Copious Readers,

I am thrilled to share with you exciting news: I’m moving to Beirut!

That’s right — I hinted at it a couple of weeks ago, but now it’s Onely official: I’ve accepted an Assistant Professor position at the American University of Beirut and will be moving in early September.

Between applying for jobs, interviewing for a number of them, flying to Beirut to make this decision AND finishing my dissertation (!), these last few months have been a whirlwind of intellectual and emotional activity. I could never have predicted that I would begin my career overseas, much less in Lebanon — but after my visit, I knew I had to go. When else, I wondered, would I ever get an opportunity like this — an opportunity that will allow me to cultivate my love of travel, improve my understanding of other cultures, all while actually pursuing the career for which I’ve been trained? To be honest, I had low expectations — the academic job market is rough, especially in the Humanities, and I assumed I would end up living in Farmville USA for most of my career (no offense to actual Farmville residents). And who knows, that might be true in the long run — it’s only a four-year contract and who knows what will happen after that.

Living overseas is one of those things that I’ve always wanted to do but never saw fitting into my life plan… I didn’t study abroad (even though my undergrad school offered a semester in Spain); I never pursued the Peace Corps (though I studied the application occasionally in my early 20s); hell, I hadn’t even ever left the country until a few years after college. Yet every time I’ve traveled overseas, I’ve longed for a more sustained (and sustainable) experience. Instead, time and money always got in the way.

So, needless to say, I feel incredibly lucky right now. And terrified at the same time. But more than anything, I’m certain that whatever the future brings, my Onely attitude will keep me on the right track (and will surely produce some interesting adventures, which I’ll share along the way!).

So I’m curious, Copious Readers, what are the big life decisions you’ve made for which a Onely attitude has been necessary? And what kind of advice do you have for me as I move forward?

— Lisa

Onelers devenons comme fous: Lisa fait Paris (avec la maman!) January 13, 2010

Posted by Onely in Great Onely Activities, Secret Lives of the Happily Single, single and happy, Singles Resource, solo travel.
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Bon Annee, fellow Onelers! As my poor French translation above (hopefully) indicates, I spent the New Year in Paris with my mother, who has never before traveled internationally and who has been dreaming of taking this trip most of her life (well, I *know* my bad French didn’t exactly say all that, but bear with me).

Yes, I AM the luckiest daughter in the world! I traveled alone to the UK in May (see my posts here, here, and here on the experience) and have now begun exploring Europe (it’s not just my mom’s dream!). I was wary of heading alone to a country where I didn’t speak the language (ich spreche ein bischen Deutsch, and even less Russian), so going with my mom was a good first step — especially since she paid for everything 🙂

So, now that I have recuperated from my travels, I wanted to share with you my thoughts on traveling internationally alone versus with someone else: (more…)

Traveling Solo, Tips and Tales (Part 1 of 3): Best Things May 17, 2009

Posted by Onely in Great Onely Activities, Secret Lives of the Happily Single, single and happy, solo travel, We like. . ..
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View from Castle Rushen

View from Castle Rushen, Isle of Man

Hello Copious Readers!

I’m back from my two-week adventure in the UK! I visited the posh university town of Cambridge; then traveled by bus and ferry to the Isle of Man, located in the middle of the Irish Sea; then met up with a friend in Northern Ireland for two and a half days and visited the Giant’s Causeway, among other beautiful sights; and ended my trip in London.

As you know from my earlier post, some of my experience was a bit more adventurous than I would have liked (my wallet was stolen in London), but overall, I am so happy that I decided to make this international trip a solo one. I’ve traveled through a lot of the US on my own, but traveling abroad – even to the UK, which in some ways felt like “cheating” because there was no language barrier – presented both a unique challenge, as well as a very rewarding experience. For those of you who are dreaming of taking this kind of a trip yourself, I’ve composed a series of lists detailing the best and worst aspects of traveling alone, as well as a set of tips for anyone planning an international trip alone. Here’s Part One of Three:

Lisa’s Best Things about Traveling Alone: (more…)

Onely Adventures! April 30, 2009

Posted by Onely in Great Onely Activities, Secret Lives of the Happily Single, single and happy.
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Hello copious readers,

Just wanted to write a quick hello to let ya’ll (we say ya’ll in Kentucky!) know that Christina’s going to be holding down the (hypothetical) fort for the next two weeks or so. I’m headed off on my first solo international adventure in a few short hours — to Great Britain! (more…)

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