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"Exploring the world at a slower pace"
A bit of a though one.. Hopefully some of the references give a better idea, though most of them are way too nice. In general I'm quite a happy, glass-half-full kind of guy. I grew up a little around the world in Europe and Africa which makes me one of those third-culture kids that doesn't always really know where he belongs. After a couple of years in Mexico, I moved back to Belgium for 5 years. I consider Brussels my hometown (for now) and really enjoy it's surreal aspects which happen when you combine a european capital with a slightly more provincial city. But then the travel bug was itching again and I moved to Bamako in 2019, ended working here for the Red Cross and discovering the amazing music scene.
I used to work for a think tank in international development (I can try to explain what that means..) and now I coordinate refugee centers here in Belgium :) I have a 'healthy' obsession with world news and love to be aware, discuss, beer-philosophy about what's happening around us.
Why I’m on Couchsurfing
I signed up quite a few years ago and have now been both a host and surfer (sometimes with the same person) and think that CS really is an amazing way to get to know interesting people doing really interesting things wherever you might find yourself. I haven't been using it for a while (since not many people travel to Mali :D but hope to be able to offer up my couch again soon.
I keep on being surprised by the amount of positive energy people share through CS and the great connections and stories that everybody gets for 'free' :) There's some magic in turning strangers into friends in seconds and showing that this crazy system works.
For a long time I decided to not do this but since I'm in Brussels I receive 2-3 requests daily and I can't accept all of you guys:) So just so you know, I prefer to host people who have taken a bit more time in selecting their hosts and are using couchsurfing in a spirit of cultural exchanges rather than 'just' a free couch. For example, if you don't address me by name in the CS request I won't host you.
And if you describe your plans and your reason for staying with me a little more you're much more likely to get a positive reply :)
What makes stuff happen.. I love to discover what "common sense" means in different countries, in different places. I think the anthropological background makes me question, deconstruct and analyse everything a little too much. But I also love it!
I like to be outdoors. Some green around, which is lacking a bit living back in Brussels..
As I said above I'm a bit of a nerd when it comes to world news, i love to know what's happening around me.
Music, Movies, and Books
To be honest I haven't updated these for a while but most of them still ring true :)
Movies: I love all of Almoldovar's work, l'auberge espagnole, coffee and cigarettes, broken flowers, the edukators, la graine et le mulet, Rosetta, eternal sunshine of the spotless mind, science of sleep, this is spinal tap, Relatos Salvajes, Whiplash, Gegen die Wand, etc..
Shows: the wire, black books, the office, extras, Better Call Saul, Girls
Music: Lisa hannigan, Kings of Convenience, Daft Punk, Deus, Malouma, PJ Harvey, Moloko, Phoenix, Salif Keita, Thomas Dybdhal, Caravan Palace, Dj Shadow, Meschiya Lake & The Little Big Horns, Damien Rice, Lianne La Havas, Fauve, Nick Mulvey, Akua Naru, The Swell Season, Morcheeba, DJ Lefto, Parov Stelar -- mostly a bit of an eclectic mix ranging from some (good) techno to acoustic guitar passing by some swing music
Books: The selfish gene, all of KapuÅciÅski books are pretty great, guns germs and steel, time traveller's wife,
One Amazing Thing I’ve Done
Backpacked from Cape Town, South Africa to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Got taught how to build clay stoves in Mexico
Hiked the GR20 Trail through Corsica
What I Can Share with Hosts
Happy to share some language skills, apart from that I'm not sure I have any great practical skills that I can share :)
Countries I’ve Visited
Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cabo Verde, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gabon, Germany, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Kosovo, Luxembourg, Malawi, Mozambique, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Palestine, Peru, Portugal, Senegal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, Uganda, United States
Countries I’ve Lived In
Belgium, Burundi, Mali, Mexico, Switzerland, Tunisia, United Kingdom