Firstly, I would like to start by introducing myself. My name is Cat Fox, I’m 32 years old and I’m from sunny Sheffield 🌞 in the UK. I am by no means a writer but in fact a full time civil servant and a wannabe full time traveller/blogger.
I have recently returned from a 5 week American adventure which took me from the sunny west coast of California and then across to the east coast which was also surprisingly sunny given the time of year!
This was my first solo trip and I survived! Yessssss! To be honest though… I more than survived, I felt liberated from the usual constraints of everyday life, a feeling I think I’m now addicted to.
To explain a little as to why I did this trip now, especially for someone who is taunted by anxiety on a daily basis, I’m going to go off on a tangent, a little.
Basically, I love music 🎶🎶. I love to play, sing, go to gigs and festivals and I can’t think of a better feeling than the euphoria thousands of people create when all singing along to their favourite band… talking of which, one of my favorite bands and the band that has pretty much been the soundtrack to my life since 2004 is, The Killers.
I have said since 2004 that one day I wanted to see them play a home gig in Las Vegas, so when the band announced a tour last year I was alllll over those tickets. I was FINALLY in a position where I was actually able to go ❤❤❤ Vegas baby!!!
So anyways…. Back to the trip. I now had my dream gig tickets along with the want to travel America so that was it really. I’m the kind of person that once I get an idea in my head, I have to make it happen.
I started to look at the route I wanted to take as well as blagging the time off work (winner!) but then came the tricky part, trying to persuade people to come with me…. I hate going to the supermarket alone let alone going travelling alone!
As much as people liked the idea of my trip, it was MY dream, not theirs and I began to realise that I can’t spend my life waiting around for people. If I want to do something I have to get out there and do it because truly, life is too short.
So that was it, I found my flights and after hovering over the buy button for around 10 minutes with the nerves in the pit of my stomach (and my friends shouting, “just press the damn button”) I did it, I actually bought the flights. That was it…. No going back. Although the nerves were still there I also had an overwhelming feeling of excitement…. I was going to America… on my own!
The rest of the planning was a bit of a blur but to keep the anxiety levels down I made sure I had all my accommodation and transport booked prior to leaving. Also making sure I had enough cash in the bank to buy a ticket home should I absolutely hate it… like that was ever going to happen! 😂
That was it, my trip was booked. San Francisco, Yosemite National Park, L.A., Las Vegas, Lubbock TX, Bandera TX, San Antonio TX, New Orleans, Memphis, Nashville, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, New York and Niagara Falls ON.
All I had to do now was get on the plane (I’m terrified of flying) for my first solo flight. And well…. I did it. As soon as we took off I felt like all my worries flew away as well, I felt nothing but excitement. Whatever was going to happen was going to happen and I would just deal with it as I went along.
Skip ahead 2 months and I’m now sat on my sofa dreaming of the adventure I had. From the sunsets on the Californian coast, the sounds of the slammer in Alcatraz, the shear beauty of Yosemite, paddle boarding in L.A, seeing the vastness of the Grand Caynon and watching The Killers play Vegas. Horse back riding in the Texan hills, seeing the liveliest city of the dead during Mardi Gras in New Orleans (as well as seeing someone literally come back from the dead 💀- freaky), seeing Alligators in the Louisianna swamps, playing on Jerry Lee Lewis’s piano in Sun Studio, Memphis (then crying like a little girl), having a holiday romance in Graceland. Hearing all the music in Nashille and then power walking around Washington D.C., running up the steps from the Rocky film in Philadephia before hitting the bright lights of New York, eating choc chip ice cream under the Brooklyn Bridge in the crazy heat before going to the breathtaking cold of Niagara Falls and seeing the frozen falls.
This is not to mention all the wildlife I was lucky enough to see (Coyote, Dolphins, Sea Lions, Water Hogs, Racoons, Alligators, Turtles) as well as the crazy and wonderful people I met along the way. Some of which I already have plans to see again.
This truly was the time of my life and I would switch this comfy sofa in a heartbeat to be sat back on those stinky Greyhound buses (that’s a blog for another day).
I’m not saying all this was easy, in fact Texas almost broke me and I even had to change accommodation in New Orleans as the first one was so grotty. But I felt so care free on my adventure that fixing a few bumps in the road really didn’t phase me.
I had my friends at the end of my phone if I needed them and my America survival kit ( an amazing Christmas present from a friend) which contained 3 journals (also Christmas gifts!). One of the journals I took with me on my travels to document my journey – my memory is shocking so this way I could read back over the things I might have forgotten. Bullet journal writing is all the rage in L.A. so I thought, when in Rome ‘n’all that. This way, I could document what I had done each day along with my achievements.
Like I said above, I truly believe life is too short so if you want to do something, make it happen don’t let your fears hold you back and DO NOT wait for other people. Go have an adventure and enjoy life!
For me, the thought of not living life to the full is scarier than all the things that I could let hold me back, so I plan on carrying on with the adventure and you can keep up with me on here 😁.