A few months ago, right before my parents flew me back to the US for some home time, I was in Yaoundé waiting in the airport bar. There was almost no one there, except myself and maybe two other people; I figure not many Camerooneans are willing to spend airport prices, even if they can afford it, knowing the true price of a cfa.

I ordered a small orange soda, for about 3 bux. After a few sips, a lady came next to me and ordered a small soda as well. When it came she kept looking through her purse and I don’t think she could find any Cameroonean money. I offered to pay and she thanked me. We started making small talk and she asked me what I was doing in Cameroon. I told her I was with the Peace Corps. She told me her husband had been in the Peace Corps decades ago and she thought it was a great thing. I agreed.

She told me about how she worked for one of the big development organizations (like the World Bank or IMF, I don’t exactly remember) and how she had been to dozens of African countries and dozens of other countries around the world. So I asked her, if she could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? I actually make a habit of asking well traveled people this question, so I don’t exactly remember her answer, but I do remember where she said she would not live: The United States.

I found that so interesting, and we talked about some of the negatives aspects of the United States like the materialism, lack of culture, etc. Before we could really get into the conversation she had to leave and catch her plane. She gave me her card, who knows I might need a job after living on a meager PC salary for 2 years, and she left.

I know some of you who read this blog have traveled to countries outside of the US. What do you think? Is she correct in saying that if you have a choice to live anywhere, you should live anywhere but the United States?

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