That is the usual question of me when questioners find I travel alone? What! I don't even have a dog for company. No doubt they conclude there is something wrong with this guy. Probably a psychopath.
Recently that same conversation resulted in an unusual question, "Don't you get bored?" That was a strange question regarding traveling solo. I was stumped for an answer. Somehow traveling alone never equated to boredom. My response to the questioner was that I didn't get bored. There was always something to keep me busy or drive my curiosity. Always found something to do -- either physically or mental challenging. Sometimes it is the maintenance of living.
Since the question was posed, I could not resolve how to equate loneliness with boredom. However, that may be the attitude of the extrovert. The extrovert needs an audience and becomes animated and alive when surrounded by others. Without others with whom to share or talk to, the extrovert becomes lonely and -- perhaps -- bored.
However, I am essentially an introvert. I can make a very comfortable and enjoyable life with solitary activities -- physical such as hiking or mental challenges such as crosswords.
Earlier this year, I happened to cross paths with a long time road acquaintance. As we chatted catching up on each others' travels and plans, my acquaintance advised that I really needed someone to travel with -- or at least in a tandem rig. When I responded that was not going to happen, he suggested that I should have a dog. I asked how that would change things. Don't recall the response, but no doubt a comedic exchange followed when I responded that I was not a dog person. My road acquaintance (an extrovert) was projecting his needs on me. The extrovert needs an audience. The introvert is happier alone. That introvert is who I am.
Nope. I am neither lonely. Or bored.
To quote Steve Jobs: “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma–which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And, most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” -- From 2005 Commencement Speech at Stanford given by Steve Jobs