Thanks to technology today and Facebook I received my daily memories notification and found a post I wrote a few years ago and it reads as below reedited:
21 Feb 2018 - Felipe Carrillo Puerto, Mexico
This is a notice to everyone, so don't take it personally or get offended and please understand that I have now traveled more than most, but I really need to say this.
I went to live in Uruguay and a lot of people said don't move to South America, I went to Brazil and people asked me why you are going there? It's so poor. I went to Mexico and everyone told me to be careful of the cartels its so dangerous. I posted about checking jobs in Argentina, Colombia, Chile and Peru and again people told me not to go to Colombia, I mentioned the Dominican Republic and you all said "nice the Caribbean".
Here are my thoughts on all the above. Just because you all watch TV and some documentaries doesn't mean a whole country should be labelled as a no go area or no more dangerous than walking outside your door. I have just as much chance as getting robbed, stabbed or shot in Liverpool or London, New York or L.A. when walking around alone at night. And with crime the way it is today, the daytime isn't probably much different.
If I said I was heading the U.S. would any of you have something to say? If I was off to India would you have anything to say?
I was bought up in a place where lying, cheating, manipulating and violence was pretty much normal in my eyes. I was bought up to not have trust in anyone over the years of my short life and now I am more on my toes than anyone back home watching the box.
I left England nearly 20 years ago due to the shit back home and I have been in some really dangerous situations, but also I have had the opportunity to see some of the best places in the world whilst on my journey here to there.
I thank you for your concern and thinking about my well being, but as people used to tell me "don't believe everything you read in the papers". So please stop looking at all the negative shit you see about a place and actually research how fucking cool, beautiful and amazingly friendly these places are before you judge and make you opinion known.
P.S. Remember this isn't a personal attack.
Looking back at this post really gets to me. Should I really have to write this to explain myself and shut people down? As one of the comments stated below my little gripe: Far to often people believe the media, until you have lived and experienced these places for yourself to understand the beauty and the people, stop judging.
Don't get me all wrong here, I do really appreciate the concern people genuinely had for me, but it was the fact that friends and family whom I love couldn't get pass that negative mindset and due to the fact that these same people haven't step out of their county, let alone their own country.
I am sure like many well travelled individuals we ask ourselves why? Why do they feel that they need to comment about a place they have never been to and have only seen on TV? Why do they have this sudden urge that after watching Narcos they are an expert on everything Mexican? Why do they need to say their uneducated and discriminating words about Brazil or any other country for that matter?
I mean I lived in Sinaloa and as stated in another post, I have never felt more safe and secure living in Mazatlan. Yes granted its a great holiday resort and maybe I didn't get out of the comfort zone to often, but it proves my point that not all of Mexico is dangerous. I would feel more unsafe in a pub in East London after a football game than driving around at night in the backstreets of Uruguay.
A long time ago the media and papers were dedicated to tell the truth, but in todays world sometimes its hard to believe and to know what story is fake or real anymore. I understand that for some folks having a TV and chilling at home is all that they have and I also understand that if you have opinion you want to share it and it is your right to do so, but what I don't like is when your opinion has no value, facts or experience behind it.
When you travel your mind set changes and you are never the same person you was when you left home or even leaving the last county you were in. You see a bigger picture and there are negatives and positives to take from each place you decide to settle for a while, but that doesn't mean a whole country or persons from that country should be painted with the same brush. And yes there is a danger when you head off to some of these countries, but isn't it a danger everywhere?
The U.S. might not be on the worlds most dangerous list, but I am sure that with the amount of racism, gun owners, poor and wealthy divides its a ticking time bomb, but going to the states is O.K.? I know I wouldn't feel to safe there knowing every other person has a gun and from what I have seen in the media it is a complete mess at this current time, but is it my duty to bitch, make sly comments or tell my friends not to go? Hell no! I haven't been to the land of the free, so I have no authority to give advice or making any negative comments abut traveling through there. So why would you guys at home feel the need to do it?
Throughout my time here and there I have never been robbed on the street or had a gun in my face, I have met some of the most captivating and incredible people from all walks of life and I have enjoyed every moment of my nomadic lifestyle here on earth. Surely my experience counts for something doesn't it?
Like so many nomads, explorers and adventure seekers we are best choosing our own path and we relish on the advice, experience and expertise from the ones who have made their own footprints whilst travelling, a real insight to a destination that is on our list. So please if you haven't stepped out of your front door and have only watched the latest travel program then do keep your silly remarks and opinions to yourself or maybe get out more.
Peace, love and travel.