I’ve just read an article that again confirmed why our new WomanGoingPlaces website was created.
In a piece entitled ‘Home Alone’ in the Age’s Sunday Life Magazine, writer Dianne Blacklock, divorced and mother of four grown children, wrote about finding herself on her own after raising her children. After giving priority to her family for all those years, she was now excitedly looking at how she could enjoy her life as a single woman.
“I’m meeting new people, broadening my career in all kinds of interesting ways, and next year I’m planning to travel – to the places I want to go, to see things I want to see, without having to consult anybody else. I think I’m entitled to it, especially after all those years of ‘eating the burnt chop’, of putting everyone’s needs before my own.”
She loved child-rearing but refused to accept that she couldn’t go on independently to enjoy life.
“I’d like to think there are also many happy years ahead of me, with new adventures and different challenges. And I refuse to miss out on opportunities because I’m single – in fact, I suspect that many opportunities are available to me precisely because I’m not tied down.”
Dianne has perfectly described the way many of us feel – that there’s life after child-rearing and other family responsibilities, and to live that life to the full is entirely possible as well as necessary.
The question is how to go about making the most of your independence? That’s where WomanGoingPlaces comes in.
Some of us want to take the plunge into a grand adventure, an overseas trip to exotic or unusual destinations. Others are more inclined to build on smaller adventures nearer to home. All of us want to engage in experiences that pique our interest and absorb us in activities or surroundings that fascinate us and bring us delight.
Whatever the scale of your ambitions, we’re here to offer ideas and suggestions of where to go and what to do. Things that we have found engaging and perfect to do whether on your own or with others, but are particularly suitable if you are going solo. We want you to get a taste of what we experienced through extensive videos and photos, as well as reports of what we found.
Although Augustine and I have traveled a lot and lived in other countries, we are now discovering exciting developments in our own home city, Melbourne. For example, the tour of Melbourne’s laneways sparked in me an interest in street art. I found so much of it inventive, vibrant and compelling. So much so, that when someone I spoke to recently dismissed it without having seen it, as graffiti, I was a bit offended that the creativity I saw on the walls of Hosier Lane was reduced to sheer vandalism. In fact, street art is now fetching thousands of dollars.
Recently, the City of Melbourne blackened over all the existing street art on Hosier Lane to give a chance to new artists to make their mark as part of the National Gallery of Victoria’s Melbourne Now project. It’s a reminder of how ephemeral this art form is. Our WomanGoingPlaces Melbourne Laneways Street Art video captures the work on display at a particular point in time. See http://womangoingplaces.com.au/go-touring-melbourne-street-art/
Augustine’s yachting adventure was another unexpected find. Amazingly, it’s an opportunity to go sailing that’s open to everyone all around the Australian coastline wherever there are yachting clubs.
And if you want a rewarding encounter with Australia’s unique ocean environment that’s less well known than the Great Barrier Reef, see our Ningaloo Reef Australia for Solo Women Travelers. (womangoingplaces.com.au/ningaloo-reef/)
We’re new, but we’re adding destinations and activities all the time. We welcome your comments, suggestions and stories. If you know of a special place or activity, tell us why you found them particularly suitable to go on your own.
I leave the last words to Dianne Blacklock on going solo:
“The hardest thing about being single is the perception that there’s something wrong with you, that you’re incomplete. But I’m happy to just go my own way and do my own thing. And the best part is, I don’t have to explain myself to anybody.”
Dianne Blacklock’s article can also be read at www.dailylife.com.au/health-and-fitness/dl-wellbeing/the-joy-of-being-divorced-20131122-2y0sa.html .