Travelling solo is something we’ve all yearned for, especially those of us who have read Eat, Pray, Love at least three times. However, the fear of the unknown can prevent us from exploring all this planet has to offer. That’s why the team at Shemazing have teamed up with some of the most inspiring and empowering ladies, who have travelled alone. Their stories will educate you, inspire you and leave you itching to catch the next flight out of your hometown.
In the first of our series Travelling Light, we speak to Katie Silcox, editor of Contemporary Class Magazine.
Katie jetted off to Greece at the age of 33 as a volunteer and quickly settled into life as a local in Athens.
“I took time off from paid employment to volunteer at a refugee camp on Lesvos Island, Greece for three months. After the three months there finished I found I had enough work as a freelancer to continue the freelance life – and I chose to do so from Athens, Greece.”
Having lived in Sri Lanka, India and the United Arab Emirates, Katie was already used to living abroad, but moving to Greece was still a big step for her.
“By the time I moved to Greece, I'd already made the solo-move to live abroad a few times so the move itself didn't really factor as a fear. Especially as Greece is closer to home (UK), and more culturally similar than the places I'd lived in before.
“My main worry this time was that I was giving up full time work, and didn't really know what would come next. But thankfully I found plenty of remote, freelance options!” she shared.
Despite her fears and doubts, Katie adapted to life in Athens with ease. The relaxed way of living, the friendly locals and their laid back attitude helped Katie appreciate life more. They taught her to embrace the little things and to make it a priority to enjoy quality time with friends, family and neighbours; which is something we can all learn from.
Moving to Greece left a major impression on Katie, “Living abroad has changed me in so many ways that it's actually hard to visualise who I would be today if I hadn't ever done it! It opened my mind, exposed me to different cultures and ways of living, probably made me more tolerant, definitely taught me a lot of patience, and has presented me with many, many new friends and opportunities.
“I'm eternally thankful I made that first move, and honestly can't imagine my life now if I had just taken the safe option of staying in my home country.
Katie stressed, “If you get the opportunity – just do it. In fact, more than that, if you're considering moving abroad as an option then actively seek it out. Moving abroad eight years ago was the best thing I ever did.”