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I have been literally all over this world except for the south pole : my place is America. It's where it's at. Bitch, gripe or complain....fine. You go, I'll stay, amigo. Heads up, RETIRED IN MESA.
In Laos last fall I ate for as little as 38 cents a meal (rice noodle soup with veggies). I then spent 10 weeks traveling across China (bus surfing) and in one 4 week period I spent $150 on housing (small apartment - cold water only) and $62 on food from street vendors. It was wonderful. The Chinese people are the most kind, most generous and the most friendly people of any country I have visited over the last 30 years (18 countries).
Mexico is nice but pricy (10 trips there). In Panama, despite plenty of Americans living there for 75 years, it was hard to find anyone (retail, taxi drivers, etc) that spoke English and saw a lot of areas forgotten by their government. I was stupid, and visited Guatemala City in January without reading about it before I left and nearly froze. Its elevation is a 1000 feet higher than Denver and surrounded by mountains so its cool, about 60 degrees but sunny.
I visited Malaysia 20 years ago and (at that time) found hotels with breakfast or guest houses for $4 a night and fresh 1/4 pound shrimp for about $1.50 a pound from fishermen. Asia is a long flight however so if you go plan to stay a few months.
Just go. Head for Central/South America r Asia and try 2-3 different countries spending a month or more in each. Then decide.
Malta is my dream retirement place. Great weather, English spoken, safe to walk alone or at night, and excellent new medical center. Many have never heard of Malta, so it will be my little secret.
If I had my choice it would be Australia. Lived there years ago and have regretted leaving ever since.
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