“There are no foolish questions and no man becomes a fool until he has stopped asking questions.” ― Charles Proteus Steinmetz
Fifteen years ago, when we explored our options to retire abroad, I joined many expat forums. Most of the forums were on Yahoo, but today you can find a variety of expat forums on Facebook.
I was raised with the mantra, “No question is stupid.” Therefore, I asked many questions on the expat forums. When I look back on the questions I asked, I laugh at myself because I was such a novice and I showed my ignorance to the world. Some answers I received were rude and condescending. I’m thin-skinned and my feelings were hurt. I was called a “rabid cow” in one response to a question I asked. Other responses were kind and helpful. Thank goodness for those gentle people, or I may have never retired abroad for fear of the wrath of the “know-it-all” expats.
It is a fact – everyone is ignorant in some way or another. Although ignorance is scary, I will be the first to admit that many times, I didn’t know I was ignorant, and I never wanted to expose my ignorance if I was aware that it existed.
Below are some unique questions asked by future expats:
1. We have heard that due to the threat of Ebola they are not allowing used clothing into the country. Is this ban still in effect?
2. Does anyone have some insight into bringing a horse from Sweden to Nicaragua?
3. Is the soil in Nicaragua rich with vitamins and minerals? I’m wondering if the fruits and vegetables are loaded with them. I”m thinking of bringing my juicer with me on my trip there.
4. Are the skies being geoengineered there?… (trails from unmarked aircraft that spread out and white out or haze out the whole sky)?
Ignorant questions carry two kinds of responders in two entirely opposite directions: The mild and gentle responders, it carries towards empathy and understanding; the persecuting responders it carries into fiendish sadistic cruelty. ( In cyberland, I think these responders would be called trolls, and there are an abundance of them.)
If you are an experienced expat, responding to these questions…how would you respond?