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12 November 2006 - 5:34pm -- Joseph

We went to Limbe today to attend a remberance day memorial service held by the British High Commision at the War graves in the botanical gardens. We were invited by the High Commision because we'd registered our presence her in Cameroon with them.

The invite was emailed to us, and was written in the typical formal English style (as opposed to the formal Cameroonian style, which uses flowery language and reference God a lot, if you've ever read a spam email from Nigeria, you'll know what I mean..). This style was maintained until the last paragraph, where it said 'afterwards you are cordially invited to the house of Dick Scott for drinks and small chop' (chop is pidgin for food/eating).

We decide to go because we thought it would be interesting to meet some of the ex-pat community (and for the small chop).

The service itself was short and, well, not sweet, but you know, appropriate. There was an awkward moment afterwards when no-one mentioned the reception, and all the rich white folk climbed into their four-by-fours and zoomed off while we stood round cluelessly like lemons. Fortunately, Dick himself offered us a lift - job's good'un!

His house in on the coast (no really, on the coast, the bottom of his garden is the Atlantic Ocean), and his next-door-neighbour is the Prime Minister. Needless to say, it was very nice house, as was the small chop and free cold beer!

We chatted to one very nice British lady who works with an NGO in Yaounde, but mostly we chatted with the Cameroonians! Not that the our fellow Britons weren't friendly, but they all knew each other, and were generally a bit older than us!

We had a really nice time, and it was interesting to see the range of people who choose to leave Britain and live here. There wasn't anyone who fitted the crazy ex-pat stereotype I had in my head, though there was a German guy with an impressive handlebar moustache, goatee, rat's tail, suit and medals combo which has to be seen to be believed...


I'm curious...what do ex-pats do-- for a living-- in Cameroon?


I think people are either working for NGO's, or living on their own means, because cost of living is low.

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