Traveling without a home base is tedious at times. Living out of a suitcase, always looking for affordable accommodation and limited privacy are but a few of the inconveniences.
When the thrill of looking around the next corner doesn’t outweigh the burdens of hitting the road again and again, we ask ourselves, wouldn’t it be time after four years of continuous travels to settle down? But where?
George and I, we both have family. George in South Africa and USA; I in Switzerland and France. What are the requirements of a place we could call our home? Being a Swiss and George a South African we can choose to live in any country of the European Union or in South Africa.
Would South Africa or Europe win the race if we add up the advantages of either possibility?
Wildlife and wilderness
We both love vast, empty spaces with as little population as possible to be able to observe wildlife in its original habitat. South Africa is unbeatable with its uncountable National Parks and Nature Reserves. From everywhere in the country at the southern tip of the African continent we can get to wild places in a comparatively short drive.
The point here goes to South Africa.
Good weather doesn’t only mean warm summer temperatures, but sun and blue sky, be it in the snowy alps in the winter or at the Garden Route in South Africa. The possibility to live with open doors leading out on the veranda all year around is a preferable way of life, missing out though on the changes of seasons like in Europe.
I’ve to give here a point to Europe and South Africa as well as I love the changes of seasons a lot.
Even if we settle down we won’t stop traveling, because our love to discover unknown corners of the world isn’t satisfied as yet. It is convenient to live where we find the best flight connections to most parts of the world.
Certainly that’s a point for Europe.
To be able to live a comfortable lifestyle the costs of living are essential. There are countries in Europe which are less expensive than others. But the favorable exchange rate to the South African Rand makes South Africa the country of choice.
One point for South Africa
Europe is a safe place to live, except from some cities, maybe. The major issue of South Africa is the lack of safety. The crime rate is extremely high.
Living behind burglar bars and electrical wired fences in security compounds is unfortunately necessary to be safe in cities, where the proportions between rich and poor differ largely. But also on the countryside on farms and small holdings one can’t live without safety concerns.
A biiiiiiig point for Europe
Coast, Lagoons and Sea
Indefinite beaches, rugged coastlines, mountains raising above the sea, saltwater lagoons which boast of wildlife; not anywhere in Europe I have ever seen such a stunning landscape as in South Africa.
A biiiiig point for South Africa
…and other countries?
There you go! I knew that that question would finally come!
The world has so much to offer. Assuming that visas wouldn’t be a problem, we could also think of other countries to live in.
What about the USA?
Beautiful Rocky Mountains, wolves, bears, eagles, just too beautiful for words. But no, not with the present rum-dum of a president (and the people who voted for him)! Maybe Canada if it wouldn’t be so cold …but then, the cold is also beautiful.
What about Central America?
Costa Rica was awesome! Wildlife and plenty National Parks AND no military – most sympathetic!
… and South America?
Argentina was beautiful but with the corruption going on the country is in a down spiral with house high inflation. Ecuador? Beautiful, but quite a culture shock. Maybe Uruguay, a great example for bashfulness and good governance.
Not to speak of Asia, Australia, New Zealand and the most beautiful Pacific we’ve only heard of!
Um …, no – we are not ready to settle down yet. Still too much to see and experience. We shall keep on traveling around the world at a slow pace for a little while.