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Old 14-03-2019, 08:49   #61
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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Originally Posted by swisssailoralex View Post
I'm in Cape Verde, Africa. Islands off the coast of Senegal. I rapidly interacted with the locals. One which fixed my outboard motor for about $100, while in the Canaries and in Europe everyone told me to just get a new motor.

Since I've developed a wonderful friendship and many more. I actually take the time to know the people of the places I sail to. Been in Cape Verde 5 months.
[/URL]
The best way to illustrate this is through film and video and see for yourselves:
[URL="https://youtu.be/jAMqF17Lzzw"]
Huh. I was just gonna suggest watching some of Alex's videos.

The answer to this conundrum is there is no answer. You can't ignore the changes inherent in an "invasion" of cultures. Even trying to mitigate it brings on just as much possibility of change or resentment as diving in and doing your worst. It's when entire cultures or institutions (Imperial Britain, the Catholic Church etc.) decide what is best for the moral well-being of an entire other culture that things become problematic.

I fall back on the golden rule and hope for the best. But then again I am a cultural coward and being offensive is up there in my travelling worries...
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Old 14-03-2019, 09:15   #62
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

We have been fortunate to have sailed in many different places, bare boating,
and have had marvelous experiences with the local people. We have also had eco
trips on land .

We treat everyone world wide , including where we live with respect. We share greetings, smiles, and talk story WITH them.

As mentioned before, several years back, we gave it all away and moved over to
Kauai Island for 10 yeears. Different from Oahu, Maui, and the Big Island. Although
we did gone a super fun stay cations to our neighbor islands.

The moving to Kauai. We moved from one beach community, huntinton beach and seal beach in socal, to a beautiful island, and beach style living.

We just melded in immediately. It is the same for us, where ever we go.

As to Kauai, we were respectful, and friendly. They do not care about your mercedes, or million dollar house, what is important, is respect for the aina ( land ), the people , and what is in your heart and mind. Politeness, talking story, and sharing aloha. Note: True Aloha is a lot of different things and actions.

As to giving back to the island, we did that thru volunteering for beach and river and harbor clean ups. And became Kauai sierra club volunteer hike leaders. We also met, in person, the people running for political offices, island and hawaii state wide.

We also joined Malama (to protect ) Maha'ulepu and Surf Rider.

Also, we did not okole sit and ponder of making life difficult. We were active, and
out enjoying Kauai's natural treasures every day. As well as out meeting new people
every day.

I was working at brenneckes beach center a few days a week, within three days of moving on island.

Also, we joined the Kauai Athletic Club, and were serious about working out
and maintaining our physical fitness. But what was also rewarding was
meeting and making very special friends at the gym, from all walks of life and
back grounds and cultures. Those friendships endure.

We were out socially as well, and thus met and interacted with locals and residents and visitors alike. Made more friends. We absolutely loved living on Kauai Island.

We did not move to Kauai, no do we sail in the islands of Australia, or Tahiti, or
Tonga, or the Caribbean to " save the people " . We do however, definitely
enjoy interacting with them, and sharing aloha. And, being open, friendly, and
always respectful, and not demanding as well as giving back by volunteering to'
make things a little better.

We, of course, contributed to the economy by being on those islands, and loved
every minute .

Yep, pretty simple, just relating people to people, and giving back in
very simple ways that felt good to our hearts. Others can contribute in
whatever way feels good them. All would be graciously accepted.

Friendship is precious cargo, Respect is vital, and

Sharing all the meanings of Aloha, everywhere we travel is very rewarding for us,
and for those who we share that Aloha with.

Me ke aloha pumehana.

Denny and Erica.
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Old 14-03-2019, 09:17   #63
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

"The morality of interactions with the locals"


Do this also apply for Europeans coming to USA.
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Old 14-03-2019, 09:27   #64
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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"The morality of interactions with the locals"


Do this also apply for Europeans coming to USA.
... especially in the past centuries ...
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Old 14-03-2019, 12:41   #65
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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Sometimes we never discover if those we interact with are truly representative of a culture.

A broad example: Its been my experience individuals residing in large cities or seaboard communities are not necessarily representative of the whole; but they are representative of their locale.

Traveling further inland usually verifies this premise for me.

The same applies when partaking of preplanned routes/activities intended for tourists— vs. not.

And sometimes too much foreknowledge hinders objectivity when traveling. [But who wants to arrive totally uninformed...?] This is a bit different for cruisers, who will be passing additional places to visit on their journey. [Compared to those selecting a location to fly into— missing everything along the way...]

As already mentioned in a variety of ways, genuine openess, friendliness and respect yield the highest quality moments for everyone.

I believe 'Leave only footprints; take only memories' applies here more than ever...

Cheers! Bill
Bill
Your point is good and very well stated. I spent some time in Jamaica and found driving around the country that there was a very large difference between what I saw and what a friend of mine saw who only did a tourist stay in Montego Bay.

BTW - I was prepared with Kayla and her previous life and a member of the National Spelelogical Society and their motto is: “Take nothing but pictures, Kill nothing but time, Leave nothing but footprints”.

Al, S/V Finlandia
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Old 14-03-2019, 12:53   #66
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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OK, coconuts were free...
I was asked 20 euros a piece in Seychelles the other day ...
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Old 15-03-2019, 10:13   #67
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

"Locals". Kind of a broad topic depending on where you go. On Kauai you are either "local" or "Haole" but a lot of the haoles act like they should be locals and some of the locals act like haoles, but it is the US, they all have basically the same opportunities. Kind of a strange place to bring up regarding this topic. But here in the NW Caribbean there is a huge disparity, and true poverty, and 90% of the population has dreams of travelling to the US and wants to know if it is true that a person can really make $100. a day in the US. It is admiral that these people can treat us like true friends at all. They are not even allowed in our country. It is hard for the ones that have never been to understand why we would have left. And it is very hard for us to even imagine trying to raise a family for $5.00 a day. A lot of people are dying here just because they can't afford medicine. But on the other hand a lot of the people that you meet will give you a sob story to ask for a "loan". Morality definition: the extent to which an action is right or wrong. I think that most of us would agree that you are morally obligated to help somebody (if you are able to) if they are in a life or death situation. But on the other hand you can't save the world. Are they better off if they did not interact with you in the first place? If the tables were turned would they have helped you? Is that relevant? To what extent can you afford to help people? Or afford not to? Are you helping to quench the guilt that you feel? Are you being guilt tripped into helping? Is it better to travel somewhere with less disparity? Or not talk to people? Or hide in your boat? From my perspective, The more that you open your eyes, the more that you see what a f*cked up world we live in. Maybe some of you don't see it that way. Maybe ignorance is bliss.
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Old 15-03-2019, 11:27   #68
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

Others can feel to wallow in your negativism and guilt. We do not chose to do that.

As to Kauai, we did not become hawaiians, That was not going to happen, but we certainly did not isolate ourselves from the local people, resdients, etc, We also visited Kauai, for 12 years before moving over for 10 yrs, and our actions were from our hearts, not out of any guilt. We loved kauai and still do.

As far as guilt trips, they do not exist with us. Period, end of story.

As to the poverty in the caribbean, we have witnessed that down in the windard and grenadines, and tho we had great sailing and good times, we have never been back . And , will not return .

Also, will not return to Naha Okinawa, or Iwakuni Japan, or Tainan, Taiwan. Or Vietnam, that was 1965 and I volunteered .

Speaking of local people, when stationed in Japan or Okinawa.... my squadron
helped out an orphanage, again I volunteered. We dove out to the orphanage, by bus. We would visit every few weeks.

The bus was filled. We interacted and played base ball with the kids, and later on, we built them a base ball back stop and diamond, and brought out bags of mits, gloves, balls, bats, etc for them to keep. Christmas time, we invited them out to the base, sent a bus, and we gave the kids a hearty meal, they got to meet Santa, and we had loads of christmas gifts for them.

That was not any guilt, We just wanted to help them out. That may be hard to
understand for the negative and guilty minded.

We chart our own course in life, and can pick and chose the areas that we wish to sail or explore by land, or live. And we have had great and very rewarding experiences.

Not only with actively enjoying the natural treasures , but the people as well.

The only other major place that I have been, that i do not care to return to is Vietnam. That was 1965, and I volunteered .

Other places that we have sailed, or done as land trips or both, we practiced our
normal open, friendly, and respectful attitude. We actually like people .

People make the place, and every place we had great times, and were not isolated in some tourist hotel or condo.

Australia two different combined sailing, diving, white water rafting, hiking, and
partying at the pubs.

Costa Rica as well. Fantastic, and we will be returning.

We also chose Ireland, two different three week trips, 34 ft, motor vessel up the River Shannon, plus stayed on land in portumna, where we met wonderful people, as well a great good times on the river . Fantastic country and super Irish folks.



Add in Tahiti ( 4 two week bare boat sailing vacations ) . Raietea , Taha'a,
Bora Bora , and Huahine. Land stay on Moorea at end of trips.

Taha'a as well, smiling faces, and good times.

We also sailed the French West Indies, and the Bahamas. Add in the Greek Islands and Mexico, Cabo to Los Angeles Harbor ( delivery) .

Point being, we have the ability to chose places that work for us . We do not desire to spend time in troubled areas.

But regardless of the negative, guilt non sense, that others wish to subject
them selves, we will pass on all that, and continue to live our lives in positive
friendly ways. We will live as we see fit and relate and be respectful
to every one.
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Old 15-03-2019, 14:37   #69
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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We try to be careful not to attempt to change the culture or ways of the locals we visit, especially when in Canada and California.

LOL, too funny!
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Old 17-03-2019, 00:38   #70
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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My "big, tough" lil' (16 lb) Boston Bulldog loves hearing comments like this. He seems to have more than a bit of a Napolean complex and, along with the typically fragile male ego, can always use the boost.

P.S. Just a little levity to maybe help the discussion not get too serious. No intent to minimize your post valhalla.
No issues, used to have a Chihuahua that would happily take on a German Shepard if we let him.
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Old 18-03-2019, 07:18   #71
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

I’m going to add a funny wrinkle to this conversation... we’ll maybe not so funny. I’m a Canadian. My wife and I have sailed on the Northern Gulf from New Orleans to Beaufort SC on the Atlantic. We’ve also sailed the Abacos extensively. During our time afloat, to say we have encountered vastly different cultures and socio-economic environments would be a mild statement. And that was without leaving the USA! There have been times when we were the least economically advantaged and at others the most. There were times when we barely understood the conversation much less partook in it. Local and national politics became such a minefield we were terrified of being asked an opinion as “foreigners”. Having said all that, my wife and I agreed to a simple strategy. Be polite, listen, nod your head a lot and always bring poutine to the potlucks.
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Old 18-03-2019, 07:43   #72
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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Local and national politics became such a minefield we were terrified of being asked an opinion as “foreigners”. Having said all that, my wife and I agreed to a simple strategy. Be polite, listen, nod your head a lot and always bring poutine to the potlucks.
Now THAT's what I would call exercising proper "morality" when interacting with the "locals!" An increasingly alien lot of locals that we've become.
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Old 18-03-2019, 07:47   #73
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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No issues, used to have a Chihuahua that would happily take on a German Shepard if we let him.
Chihuahua's were the only breed that my big(?) tough(??) wanna-be-Pit-Bull(???) would never mess with. Go figure . . .
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Old 18-03-2019, 07:59   #74
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

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We try to be careful not to attempt to change the culture or ways of the locals we visit, especially when in Canada and California.
.



People often ask of me: "what is the strangest country you've visited." I suppose they are expecting the response to be Vanuatu, or Cambodia, or UAE or something.



My response is always truthfully, if not accurately, "California."
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Old 18-03-2019, 08:07   #75
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Re: The morality of interactions with the locals

I rarely ask the locals for anything and in general I avoid them, I live on my boat because I want little to do with my neighbors and even less from the locals.

If I need something I ask how much then if I feel the price is acceptable I pay it, I may negotiate if I am in the mood. A few times a week a local boy paddles by with fresh fruits, if they are ripe and of good quality I purchase them for a fair price, never too much or too little.

I never volunteer for anything because I will only be staying a short time so why bother. I will sometimes assist another liveaboard as they pass through but I avoid the tourists like the plague.

I see the do-gooders come and build schools, churches, water treatment and medical clinics because they feel guilty about having more then those they believe they are helping. Then they leave and whatever they build goes to pieces because the locals don't care to maintain it.

Why bother, like the Prime Directive leave the locals alone.
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