- “Is that man going to rape me?”, whilst looking at anyone in possession of a penis. Perhaps a cliché but necessary nonetheless. The fact is, as a girl in a foreign country, particularly being blonde and pale, this is a serious concern of mine. If I have to walk somewhere that I don’t particularly feel secure I will, without fail, slip my keys between my fingers like makeshift knuckle dusters, whilst simultaneously whipping my head around to make sure no one is following me and sticking to the brightest part of the road. Maybe I’m being paranoid but I’ve had some close calls and it pays to be vigilant. One thing I will say is that it’s not always fellow bar patrons that try to spike your drink, sometimes it’s the bar man. Not to scare anyone, but it’s just something that people need to be wary of.
- Waxing. It’s a long trip. I’ll have to get it done in foreign countries. Do I really want a language barrier when we’re dealing with my vagina?! Probably not. Then there’s that period in between waxing when your hair is noticeably long. Should I shave? I’d have to pack razors. Do I want the horrible regrowth that comes with razors? If anyone has any experiences of waxing in Thailand, Philippines or Indonesia let me know!!
- Periods! No offence NZ but last time I was there and it was that time of the month your tampons were like something out of the dark ages. Not an applicator in sight! Might as well just shove a wad of rags up there. God knows what it’s like in Asia. However, I have recently discovered something that will eliminate all my worries; the Mooncup! This is the way forward ladies. If you don’t know what it is, have a look at the site. Literally the best thing ever. Though perhaps not if you’re in anyway squeamish. You have to empty it. Which personally makes me feel like some sort of bad ass serial killer. It also makes for a good threat to one’s boyfriend. For example, “Stop annoying me or I’ll show you my mooncup!”. Mwahahahaha. I shall post a more detailed review of this at a later date you’ll all be happy to know.
- Dying my hair. I’m naturally a mousy brown sort of colour with the odd dark blonde highlight if I’m lucky. My roots look VERY dark in contrast to my current, almost platinum, colour. Last time I tried to dye my hair in New Zealand I couldn’t find my usual colour and ended up a distinct shade of yellow. Not ideal. I’m kind of hoping the sun and sea will naturally bleach my roots just enough to give me that perfect beach hair. I’ll look like I stepped off the set of Blue Crush in no time…… right?!
- I am so pale, *weeps silently*, so very very pale. In fact, I’m transparent. Junkies die of jealousy at the visibility of my veins. Do I fake tan before I go? But I don’t want to be left with the patchy bits when it starts to wash off! And I can’t imagine the Gent doing a good job of my back either. Him and his ridiculously tanned post South Africa skin that makes me look even paler. Pfft.
- Is this bikini effective? Meaning, will it go see through in water? Will my boobs pop out if I go down a water slide/jump off a cliff/do anything other than sun bathe? Does it make me look like some sort of beached albino whale?! *eats cake to drown sorrows*
- Will I get frisked in the airport? I always feel like I did something wrong, even though I have no contraband on me. I literally look so guilty as I step through that little arch. Under wire bras; why oh why has that machine not been updated to compensate for the tiny bit of wire that keeps my boobs at a socially acceptable level?! I am basically being punished for what God gave me. Also, I don’t want a random stranger feeling inside my waistband. I’m in a relationship. I’d get in trouble for that kind of stuff! Though, on the plus side it feels like a massive victory when they don’t notice the bottle of water I forgot I had in my handbag.
- Should I really sleep with that hostel employee that I know has been with at least half the nationalities known to man?! Oh, this no longer applies to me, unless things get VERY experimental. But in the past this has been a concern of mine. Sure, he’s the most beautiful human being you’ve ever seen, but is he really worth Herpes/crabs/your dignity?! If the answer is yes then skip to point number 10. FAST!
- Make up. Do I have enough? Well, I know I have enough, in fact, too much is more like it. I’m pale now, so I need pale make up. But surely I will eventually get a tan (wishful thinking). I will then need darker make up! I must have 2 sets of make up. Why is life so hard?! Then there’s the important stuff like, is it waterproof? Will it melt off my face in the heat and humidity of Thailand causing me to look like some sort of horrific wax figurine?! Should I just go au naturelle? But then there’ll be so many pictures…..I need to look half decent!
- Contraception. Do I have enough of my Pill? I don’t. God, that means I have to go to the doctor and get weighed. I don’t want to be judged on my BMI. Last time my sister, who is essentially a human stick insect, went to get hers done the nurse basically told her she was fat. Not Impressed. Then there’s condoms. Always bring them. Even if you’re in a relationship. You never know what’s going to happen. Let’s be honest, shit gets crazy on the road, it’s best to be prepared.
- Clothes. I know I have too many, but I also know I don’t like washing clothes. So the more clothes I have the longer I can go without washing any! Then there’s things like temples to consider. Apparently some religions aren’t a fan of legs or shoulders or other such offensive things. That’s fine. But it did mean that I had to brave the rush of Primark on a weekend in order to find myself a pashmina. Shoes are the main problem. Do I have a pair for all occasions? What if I have to climb a mountain and then go to dinner somewhere nice?!
Well, if there’s a few things worrying you about solo female travel then I urge you to read this incredible guide to safety as a solo female backpacker. My friend Mike from Bemused Backpacker wrote it. He’s a qualified nurse and used to be in the army, so you know he knows what he’s talking about.
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