Lome Togo is One of My Top Five Live Abroad Locations
“C'est un long temps.”
Hello, I am Andy Graham of HoboTraveler.com; I have lived in 90 countries, and have perpetually moved around for 15 years, never staying in location longer than three months.
There are places on the planet, where everyone knows my name, and I feel welcome, a homecoming. In the last few days, I ran into Thomas, Rene, Helena, Sylvain, Brune, etc. I would estimate that at least 20 people know me by name here, “Andre.”
And, between 50 and 100 know my by face, or more,The locals say,
One “tell” of a good live abroad location is recognition, yes, I have been to Thailand dozens of times, but few people call me by name, it is always a transient stop.
Here in Lome, Togo I receive hugs, kisses, nods, waves, and one French guy stopped his taxi in the middle of the road and ran to catch me today. This is a good feeling, which coupled with the West African culture that intermarries with my culture; this is a fine place to live.
The ability to marry a locals, have a family, send them to school, and have the children play soccer together is a windfall live abroad location.
I love Lake Atitlan, Guatemala, but I cannot marry the locals, without tons of social problems. The Kachikels girls have social shame if they are seen with me, the people calls them names, (Bad Girl Names.)
I love Thailand, but I finally realized, I would always be some form of Farang, not really wanted. I learned this by dating a nice girl who was a pharmacist. (Yes, 99 percent of the men marry boom boom girls, but not me.)
Central and South American has such an overwhelming amount of crime, it is annoying. While in West Africa, crime is almost a zero, which is relaxing when you finally realize that just because they are black, does not mean they are criminals. They are better con men here, than the Latinos, while the Southeast Asian people just ignore the foreigners, and sell us things.
Generally, 10 percent of foreigners in Latino countries drive cars, because of theft, and crime, while in West Africa maybe 90 of the white foreigners drive cars. This explains theft, and corruption, more than you can understand, but I still do not want people to drive cars.
I have done research, and tried to identify the countries that will allow me to intermarry, but it will take me years to figure this out, collect the data properly, and explain in way that can be understood.
Top 5 Locations to Live Abroad for me, Andy Graham
1. Lome Togo (Complete Intermarry)
2. Lake Atitlan, Guatemala (No Intermarry)
3. Somewhere transient in the Philippines (Half Intermarry)
4. Rio de Janeiro (Not sure on Intermarry)
5. Kathmandu, Nepal (No Intermarry, or ½)
Lome has many large super markets ran by India and Lebanese people, I went into a very large Ramco store today, and it was great to know, while yes, it is expensive, I can still buy the food I am crazing from home.
I am slowly realizing, while I do like the perfect climate of Lake Atitlan, the percentage of Americans is too high. I really want to live at a live abroad location with less than 5 percent Americans. The USA culture is not worldly, does not speak languages, and extremely insulated, it is not my favorite culture on the planet for developed nations.
I would suppose the best cultures for me are the Netherlands, Swedish, and maybe Belgium, and then maybe Germans. One on one the French is ok, but in groups, they are about the same as Americans, clickish, self-absorbed and full of mockery.
Well, I am feeling at home here in Lome, Togo, soon I will go to Kpalime and Atakpame, two more homes away from home for me.
Generally, figuring out the motorcycle taxis, or the collective car taxi is the million dollar travel skill in West Africa. Of course, I have to speak French, and that alone stops many people.
But, West Africa is a great place to meet nice women, who will marry me, have my children, and allow me to become a neighbor.
It is strange how few countries will allow me to become a neighbor.
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its been quite awhile since Ive read about your travels and life lived abroad blogs. Sounds like youre very content and feeling cozy in West Africa. Interesting summations the cultures and foreign expats in the various areas of the world. So all the BEST to you and your old friendships. Looks like your new transition to facebook and so much added website content has helped you recover from those google changes last year CONGRATULATIONS! Enjoy Life!
We went back to hometown midwest USA to start a 49 day, 6000+ mile road trip up the Mississippi River and across the Great Lakes coastal roads to the Atlantic coast spending the last 8 days in Manhattan. Have postponed another trip because waking up each day excited about life busy with our projects here on Boracay Island is feelin GREAT. May take off to Madagascar and East Africa for 3+ months later this year.
Andy, I have seen your video on the Lome market fire. This market is not just one market, it was the market in Lome, and before the port was build, already an hub for the city. I have a family in Lome, one aunt of me had a small shop inside the market, now she has lost everything in that fire. You sure know how the businesworld in Westafrica works, there are many Nana Benz businesswomen, and many traders would buy on a commisson basis their goods from them. Now theose who have lost their shop will have to pay the price of the goods to the owners, and only the small shop of my aunt was worth 15.000 Euro, one can imagine the loss of many other who had a bigger store. The people are angry because two markets have been looted, up in Kara and 3 hours later the one in Lome, the ones who did it knew well enough that all the shopowners had their money inside their shop, so they went inside and got the money before they set the fire in the 1st floor. People are angry and desperate because they have lost everything, and they know all to well only the government is capable of burning down 2 markets almost simultaniously. In the next week they will celebrate the 50th year of the coup detat by the regime, and Faure has cancer, many bet he wont survive this year. The regime has always played the shock and awe card, but this time they have outraged an whole city. Rumors went on for years that the regime wanted to get rid of the market, they had plans to use the area otherwise.My aunt will have like many other sellers leave the country, otherwise whe will be targeted by the people she owes money too.
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