After retiring fromt the army, I wanted to go to Africa somewhere. I have often dream of going to Africa, returning to the mother land, but where would I go, as an African American,,what country.
So finally, I made up my mind and had the opportunity, which I got from a nice lady from The Gambia, living in Europe. I had no idea what kind of trouble I setting myself up.
We made plans and I paid round trip air fare for three, me, my friend and my Gambian sponsor.
Retiring from the army, I have seen many asylum seekers or whatever you want to call them. I felt just like I was the same and though I had a passport, I felt I did not need a visa. Go figure, but that was just Art.
We finally arrived and oh how excited I was. Upon reaching the custom rep. I explained I was an African-American and did not know from which African country I was, but I wanted to look here to see if I could make this my home. I may as well told that man I was a criminal coming to kill everyone. He had no mercy and began shouting at me. If I did not hear the plane taking off behind me, I would have turned around and went home. So I decided to stand up for myself. Hey, I am a African American, may be I am originally from here. Well if you going to put me jail do it, but I will not allow you to humiliate me like that. I was so sad my very first visit to Africa, the Gambia started out so bad. Well he finally let me go with a promise to purchase a visa on the next week day. Why did not he take my name and number to be on the look out? Why didn't he give me more civil and better advice?
Being in the Gambia for 9 weeks, with thoughts of starting a new home, just like Jew welcome exiled Jews, I lost about five thousand dollars, was voodooed and damn near went to jail and had poor food to eat. My sponsor and host family were terrible, even though I paid for my room and board. They did not give a "darwn" and tried to trick me in every way.
I also contracted a serious sinus infection that they could not treat. Can you imagine how much time and money I wasted going to the doctors?
Investors will benefit from a number of one-stop-shop services and facilities, including the entire infrastructure they need for operating profitable investment undertakings. They got your one stop shopping center alright! I was Arrested and threatened to be jailed for having illegal money, drugs and weapons. Like I said, my sponsor was treacherous.
Between the beggars and the very aggressive pedalers I was constantly interrupted. They rushed me as if to rob me. I did have thoughts of buying a gun.... I had about six pieces of luggage...was staying for weeks. Trying to protect it, run them off and getting ground transportation was a nightmare. I guess you say, what about my sponsor? I was what it was!
I was in negotiations for a hotel, resturant,,,anything in tourism. The places I was shown were run by criminals. They could care less.
One of the three people I was traveling with contracted the worse case of malaria. The medical people failed to recognize the symptoms and treated her for something totally different. According to a european hospital, she would have died soon had not she returned to Europe for proper medical care. I hate to even think about how close of a call that was.
That was just one trip...I went twice.
No, the Lord is not quite through with them yet.
On the day I was to fly out of the country they did not want to let me out because, I still did not have a visa.
Shortly after returning to America, I learned that The Gambian government had been over-thrown. I thought, Wonder how far and I only imagine why.
Toubakolong Partnership, The Gambia!!! Now, I am going to try it again, but this time things will be different....Art
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