My European Interrail Dare Experience
October 20, 2011 9:29 PM

   

In 1999 when I was 16 years old I went on a completely unplanned three week interrail trip through Europe. The reason for this was because I was dared into it. Now initially my family and I were just supposed to visit relatives in Stockholm for a few days. But when we got there it turned out that my 17 year old cousin had planned to go interrailing with three of her friends. However one of those friends had now become sick and was no longer able to tag along.

Due to this cancelation my aunt refused to let my cousin go on this trip. Because she wanted there to be two boys and two girls instead of one girl and two boys who traveled together. So during a heated discussion about whether or not I would dare to go with them, I said: "Of course I would!". But the truth was that I did not really think it was a serious question. I thought it was more of a typical tease question like: "Well why don't you come along instead Alexandra, ha, ha, ha!?". Which was why I said yes.

BUT, it turned out that my mum thought a trip like this would be a great experience for me. One she wished she had had the opportunity to go on at my age. Ehum, what mum!!!? Mum also said she would sponsor me if I really wanted to go. I guess interrailing was one of those more cheap holidays alternatives back then..? Anyway, after some quick last minute preparations - off we went. And just like that a few days of summer vacation in Stockholm turned into three weeks of interrailing through Europe for me.

My European Interrail Dare Experience
Ahhh! What happened!? Feeling a bit crazy in a train station somewhere in Europe...

My European Interrail Dare ExperienceMy European Interrail Dare Experience
Left: Pondering in Paris, France. Right: Standing next to some gondolas in Venice, Italy.

Now even though this trip entailed some homesickness and teenage drama. It was indeed one of the most amazing experiences ever! Mostly because I learned so much from it, both about Europe and myself. For instance, it was during this trip that I realized that I am so much more strong and capable than I think I am. And that I should never ever let fear control me. I mean if I had listened to my fears back then I would had missed out on so much. Needless to say, I am very grateful that I dared to say yes to this trip!

/A.L
 
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