I think a lot of us go through that “posse” phase in our early adult life. That phase where you just have to travel in packs no matter what. Some people never come out of that phase while others venture off into solo mode. I never would have imagined that I, Shamair, Ms. T’ingz Nice, would be a solo soca assassin. But honestly, after about 4 years of planning group trips you just want to sit back and be a little selfish. So that’s where I am right now.
Instead of making moves based on where my friends are going, I just make moves based on what I want to do, and if that happens to fall in line with their plans, then great! In the past, we would all link up in our WhatsApp chat to ensure that everyone was set for the same parties…but our conversations have since evolved. Now, it’s more like “who ain’t going too bad, I got my ticket, stick if yuh want” or “steuppps, I’m over that fete or carnival, y’all have fun”. It’s every man for him or her self.
When it came to Miami, I purchased my flight without knowing which of my friends were down for the cause. I wanted to attend fetes that I’ve never been to before, and man-oh-man was I happy with my fete lineup! I refused to go to Red Eye, Shine, SSU and the other older events. I also refused to play mas (but that’s another blog post lol).
Honestly, group trips can be a drag, but the memories are usually worth it in the end. It’s great to sit down and have boisterous recaps with the crew about recent shenanigans and it’s always awesome to have driving substitutes when you want to get a little LIT. Oh, and duh, it’s wonderful to have a plethora of photographers on hand to catch you “bennin’ up”. But lets face it, there’s something uber special about a solo travel, fete, or carnival experience.
Let me list a few of these beautiful things:
1. The beauty of moving at your own pace and not having to worry about the next individuals: No, I don’t want to stop my vibes to walk back with you to use the wee wee truck. No, I don’t want to wait on you for 3 hours to do your makeup. No, I’m not ready to leave the fete because you’re not having fun.
2. The beauty of paying for your own meal and not fretting about how you’re gonna split the bill 18 ways (#truestory).
3. But lets be more positive. The real beauty is the social experience. If you’re not STUSH you will make new fete friends! I was a true loner in Trinidad this year, and I recall being asked almost daily “why you always alone” and “where is your crew”? It was simple, I didn’t have one. It was unusual, but thank God for street smarts and womanly charm. I made it through my first Trini experience safely and it played a big role in my new found feting independence. Just now in Miami, I went to Candy Coated Cruise and Carnival in solo mode and had a bess time! I’m telling you all I need is soca (a little dancehall) and space. As expected, I made new fete friends; however, I swear everyone I already knew was in Miami this year so I really couldn’t feel THAT alone lol!
I challenge you to take a chance and participate in at least one solo feting experience. It’s truly life changing; but, it’s not for everyone. Live outside the box!