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"A fool and his money are soon parted."
- Thomas Tusser
Come on Andy you KNOW it's Not ONLY in Africa where the locals think white people don't care about how much money they spend, almost everywhere outside the G20 welathier nations meaning in OVER 150 countries. Maybe it's the "Hollywood" effect as most people around the world get their impression of Americans from films and TV programs. Here's something I posted a long time ago but still applies and goes a long with your content today.
"10 Simple Living Tips to Help You Make Travel Dreams a Reality ( OR aka 10 Simple living Tips to Help You Live Your Dreams )
Below is how I answered a woman who wondered how could we take a year to travel around the world.
My wife and I grew up with very modest financial backgrounds guess you'd call it "blue collar" families. So we realized at a young age that not just making money was necesary to become free of the society tied to their jobs but SAVING money was important to reach financial independence. An old Chinese equation for financial success is: live on one third of your income, invest one third conservatively and invest or take a chance with the remaining third with higher investment returns. The "GROSS SALARY" is one of American society's "Brainwashes" on the American people and the other are MENTAL IMAGE TRICKS of what possessions you need to live the "good life".
We didn't really have to save up for a long time but did plan the trip over a year ago because of our 12 y.o. daughter's school and activity schedules. Tips to be able to make your dreams a reality are as follows:
1.) No impulse buying or consuming
2.) Live modestly
3.) Pay cash for your car not installments
4) Pay all credit card bills monthly with no remaining balance
5.) Share rent or live with your parents until your savings allow you to buy or rent a private living space
6.) Work more so you don't have the time to go shopping and to spend
7.) Know that traveling around the world is cheaper than living in the States and many other developed economies
8.) Love yourself so you don't need to buy something to"improve your self image"
9.) Be active with hobbies that don't cost much money like taking long walks, exercise, reading or educating yourself and lovemaking.
10. Realize that you're only human and all the above "tips" will be broken but try your best".
You're absolutely SPOT ON about the writer playing coy with his "we" reference to overspending. We notice the same innuendo used by corporate employees when speaking about their jobs and career aka "shoptalk". Funny but the Queen of England and other Royalty have the same habit of using "WE".
I know that in the realm of travel I am but a mere tourist, but I am wondering what your thoughts are when it comes to people begging for money. In general I don't feel guilty when I don't give to beggars, I do give what I consider to be a generous percentage of my income to different charities, but that doesn't relieve me from feeling sorry for the person who is begging. I have seen in your videos that almost everywhere you go in Africa people are asking you for money. I find your answer of "next week" humourous, but doesn't get you down having to repeat yourself so often?
HI Andy. Good blog. Too many people limit their options in life by spending too much for almost everything. I try to watch my money and expenses when I travel. Soon I will go west of the dateline again.
I think when Royalty says we, they are referring to the entire nation. They and I try not to consistently use the word I so much. It sounds like bragging. And I never ever want to be thought of as bragging about myself. It just is not me.
My travel plans for 2011 do include Costa Rica and NIcaragua. Reading your blogs is one of the high points of my day.
John you do not feel guilty, but you feel sorry for beggars.
Ok, I have compassion for beggars, and treat them with respect. Travel has clarified in my mind that beggars are NOT NOT NOT good people with a rough time who need money.
I feel the most compassion for the crazy beggar, the looney tunes.
I have beggar rules, I wrote a travel tip about 10 year ago, that goes like this, if the beggar is not missing a body part, maybe a leg or eye, then no money.
I am a recovering alcoholic, people helped me to stay drunk for a long time by removing the pain of my actions. They helped me when they felt sorry for me, this enabled me to stay a drunk longer.
If you can get a real clear view of a beggar, pain is truly a great thing. Look at a beggar and ask the question,
"If this beggar stopped receiving money, would he or she be motivated to work?"
If this would not work, then I ask the question,
"It is the responsibility of the culture and country to take care of these people?"
Enabling kills people and countries, every time you send money to Africa, they just believe someone is coming to save them and why work hard.
Beggars or Americans, not a big difference, everyone wants something of me, of us, or them, they just say it in a different way. Coca Cola drills me, buy coke,
I am bombarded by people trying to influence me.
I told my friend Mark on the phone in a moment of clarity.
"Africa is a sinking ship, and people are all wanting to jump off before it sinks."
This is how it feels, the sad part, they have more opportunities here than other continents. Just an average business person could earn great sums of money here, because they are surrounded by horrible business people.
In the USA we search for the one idea that will set us apart, in Africa they all copy the next door neighbors business, innovative ideas are not sought, I do not know why.
People on a sinking ship wait for help to come, and often forget to swim or get into the boat.
Note: If you give to a beggar, give big, I mean enough to buy a meal, do not give small coins, if the person truy needs help, than help, do not play around.