Meeting Positive Souls When Solo Traveling

I solo traveled to Berlin with high hopes and expectations. Everyone who had been to Berlin told me for months that I would absolutely love it.

Berlin Schmidty 2

I was ecstatic about the grungy urban art, the delicious street food but above all I was most excited to experience the heavenly electronic music scene that makes Berlin the city with the best nightlife in Europe at the moment.

I was supposed to meet up with someone I knew from university who had moved to Berlin right after graduating college. We were only acquaintances and not technically friends during college but he told me that he’d take me out to his nocturnal stomping grounds and I was excited to have someone to go out with. As much as I feel empowered by doing things solo, hitting up discotheques for a night on the town is something you can do with much more swag especially with a group of homies.

Unfortunately, my acquaintance is the total archetype of the flighty, bizarre artist living in Berlin who does not appear to exist in the same temporal plane as the rest of the world. For an entire day, he gave me a series of ambiguous, one-word answers such as “sup” and “respect” to my inquiries of where and what time we should meet. Until finally at half past nine, he sent me a Facebook message telling me to meet him at Hermannplatz in 20 minutes. Of course this was an abrupt request that I failed to fulfill as I needed more than 20 minutes to get ready and figure out how to get there using Berlin’s complicated U-Bahn and S-Bahn system, and by the time I got to the plaza he was nowhere to be seen.

So there I was at Hermannplatz, with no Wi-Fi or phone service to reach my acquaintance, incredibly annoyed that he did not wait an extra 15 minutes for me to get there. I was also feeling awfully disappointed that I was out of a companion to party with and it made me a bit sad to confront the possibility of going to a nightclub solo. I opted for one last try to contact this person by approaching a girl who was rolling a cigarette in the plaza and asking if I may borrow her cellphone to text someone I was supposed to meet. She was incredibly nice and said yes. While I was figuring out how to write messages on this girl’s phone, that’s when Schmidty showed up.

Berlin Schmidty 1

Schmidty was a friend of the girl who let me borrow her phone, whose name was Maxi. Schmidty was a cheerful and down-to-earth blonde with a wide smile. Upon seeing me, she asked if I was a friend of Maxi. I said no and told her I was just using Maxi’s phone to text a person who had failed to meet me in the plaza. Then Schmidty immediately invited me to hang out with them to go dancing at an artistic music festival that she and Maxi were going to. I was quite taken aback but pleasantly surprised at how willing she was to invite people along to hang out with her group. Given my circumstances I had no reason to decline the opportunity, especially two seemingly really nice girls, so I said yes.

The three of us got to know each other while taking the train and sipping on maté. Maxi was a lot quieter so Schmidty did most of the talking. She spoke about the time she spent living in Australia, her queer hippie communities and how much she loved living solo in Berlin. She loved going out to dance but she neither did drugs nor drank because she said she was already “so high on life.” Meeting new people was how she rolled and she struck up conversation, laughed with everyone and anyone with whom we crossed paths with inside the train station, the subway, the convenience store and the bouncers in all the clubs. It was incredible to watch someone be so enthusiastic and happy to interact with strangers.

We never made it to the original festival event we were planning to go to because we decided the cover was too high so the girls took me to a series of makeshift shacks and warehouses below Warschauer Strasse where dance parties that played all categories of music went on all night. Maxi went home early because she didn’t like any of the music that was playing in the bars so Schmidty and I went to a cozy, stylish bar which played electro-swing that resembled a 1920s speakeasy. We danced the night away, until my feet hurt tremendously and I could barely walk back to the train station. Schmidty seemed to have endless energy as she danced all around, jumping up and down and interacting with everyone present. When it was time to leave, Schmidty picked me up and gave me a huge hug. She made me promise that we would see each other again, which I had no doubt that we will.

Meeting Schmidty was absolutely revitalizing and inspiring. Witnessing a person be so unguarded and excited to engage with the world gave me the motivation and confidence to put myself out there more often and engage with people in a relentlessly positive way. Thanks to Schmidty I was able to get my Berlin music fix and spend a night not solo with one of the most uplifting and beautiful souls I have ever met.

Nadia Cho

Communications Associate

As the empowered female behind the blog: International Women of Mystery, Nadia reps Team JST traveling the world in search of exclusive features on hidden gems and cool hotspots. You can find her exploring metropolitan cities or lounging on tropical beaches.

Jetset Times in your inbox

Sign-up for our newsletter

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy and European users agree to the data transfer policy.