I won’t listen.
I once thought it would be a good idea to leave it to my readers to pick where I lived. I chronicled that journey:
- Vote Where TPOL Moves Next! And I’ll Go There
- Vote Where TPOL Moves in December (For Real This Time)
- Tirana, Taipei, Lisbon, Or Bangkok: The Runoff Vote!
- TPOL Is Moving to Albania! (Eventually)
- TPOL Moves to Scottsdale: My Drive to the Desert
- Despacito! TPOL Is Moving to Puerto Rico! Effective Inmediatamente
- Recap! TPOL in Shanghai
- Vote Where TPOL Moves AFTER Albania…And I’ll Go!
- Salt Block District Tirana, Albania: Where TPOL Will Live*
- Canceled! TPOL’s Move to Albania
I once thought of buying a 1 Euro Italian Villa as well:
- Nothing to Rent in Tuscany, But Maybe I’ll Buy a House in Italy
- 1 Euro Italian Villa: Would She Be Mine?
- Did TPOL Buy a 1 Euro Italian Villa?
After Covid (see The Lost & Found Year(s)), I decided that I have zero interest in listening to other people and no desire to live in second-tier cities. That is why I have decided, economics permitting, that I will try a new style of travel. Twice a year, I will stay true to TPOL’s Travel Philosophy, bouncing from one new country in an effort to run up the Country Count List which currently stands at 126, despite the grumblings from antagonists who argue that Puerto Rico shouldn’t be included on that list (see Is Hawaii a Country?). Twice a year I will, like Celine Deion or Elton John, take up residence somewhere. The requirements are as follows:
I must rotate between my favorite cities, Shanghai and Cape Town each year. For the other residency stay, I must exhaust The Best Big Cities in the World. The list starts in Dubai in the fall of 2022, though technically not a big city, the World Cup in neighboring Qatar made it the appropriate choice (see Is TPOL Going to The World Cup?). The next stop is #19, Melbourne in the spring of 2023. That choice was made for me (see 55K Alaskan to Fiji And My New Melbourne Residence).
The following is the list of eligible cities. Though they are ranked, it does not mean I will visit them in this order. I must, under penalty of flogging, go to all of them before moving on to another.
22. Madrid, Spain
20. Mexico City
14. Barcelona, Spain
13. Montreal, Canada
12. Toronto, Canada
11. Paris, France
10. London, England
9. Tokyo, Japan
8. Osaka, Japan
I excluded #18 Tel Aviv, Israel because despite having a great time (Radio Nightclub Tel Aviv: Worth Getting Detained), I also had a bad experience there (see “You Leave Only with Passport!” Detained in Tel Aviv Again). I excluded #17 Rio de Janeiro, because out of the six languages I speak, Portuguese is not one of them (see TPOL The Polyglot: A Better Way to Learn Multiple Languages). I am better off going to places where English is prevalent or I can practice my language skills.
I knocked out the Pho Mecca, #16 Ho Chi Minh, because I don’t speak Vietnamese and because I prefer to live in modern, upscale cities. It may seem hypocritical to knock off Saigon but keep Bangkok, but I wrote the list and make no apologies for that inclusion. It may not make sense to include Tokyo and Osaka because I don’t speak Japanese, but in terms of culture, not many places are better. To the novice, it may make no sense to remove #5 Hong Kong, but I’ll always be 上海人。Curiously, my third favorite city at the time I wrote the post in 2020, Buenos Aires, is the least desirable place for me to live. However, I do speak Spanish and did enjoy the steak and wine. I kept it because everyone should learn to Tango at one point in his or her life.
If I stick to this schedule, I will complete the list by 2038. Maybe then I will have learned Portuguese and head to Rio. Deciding for myself where I want to spend my life is better than my gimmick ploy to attract blog readership.
Disclaimer: I make no apologies for the post title. You read it. It’s over. File a claim with the authorities if you feel that you were baited.
Disclaimer: Who knows what will happen come tomorrow? All of this is subject to change. That is why my Melbourne Residency is appropriately called, Over/Under.
Question: Who’s got it better than us!?