TJ - The American Ghanaian
When I travel I often come across interesting human beings who are on the same path of discovery as me.
Well Timothy Radomile otherwise known as TJ is one such personality, raised in Philadelphia, USA, I met a brother in travels and as curious as me in exploring new frontiers.
Being much younger than me I felt like what can this person tell or teach me?
Well but when you travel you learn that age is nothing but a Government given number.
A wise man once told me that every person we meet teaches us something, and I take that advice very serious.
When I lived in Athens, Greece for many months, my wife and I often took to hiking and exploring the country and this is how I met TJ...
"Hi my name is TJ,are you guys also here for the Hiking event?", This was the question a young American sounding guy approached me with,and with that he introduced himself, we shook hands and the rest is history. It was a coldish to sunny day in Athens, Greece and my wife Leila and I were waiting near the metro, to meet up with the rest of a group, we had booked a hiking excursion in a Botanic gardens with.
During the hiking excursion I got a chance to get to know TJ better and was impressed while still being young, he is well traveled, fluent in various languages and a student of International Law with a deep knowledge on various topics. Coming from the USA he now resides in Ghana,where he currently lives and studies. We enjoyed exploring Syntagma square and Monastiriki in Athens,just enjoying the sights and sounds. TJ was a foreign exchange student and on a 3 months exchange program, which unfortunately he had to cut short since the Corona outbreak.
Like most foreign travellers in Greece he saw the Corona pandemic increasing and not slowing down, and he told me he will fly out as all the universities and schools were going to close down.
A man of his word, the next day he was on the aeroplane to Ghana and thats when I also started taking this Corona pandemic seriously.
I caught up with him online, since I last met him over a month ago in Athens, Greece. TJ sees himself as a student of life, a nomad and traveller and global citizen of the world.
Afronaut: My man TJ how is it going in Ghana, and what have you been up to since you left Greece?
TJ: Hey Nessy, since I’ve returned back to Ghana from Greece things have been going one day at a time.
The priority right now is to maintain with a strong internet connection so I can keep up with my work during these strange times.
Afronaut: Can you tell the readers a little bit about your background,where you are from? TJ: I am originally from Philadelphia, USA where most of my family still resides, with the majority of them being of Italian origin.
My Italian side of the family installed the sense of working hard and never giving up in life.
It affects me the way Italy is struggling right now with this Corona pandemic.
But they are strong people and shall overcome.
Afronaut: How many countries have you visited so far, and in how many haved you lived in so far? TJ: To date, I have been to 42 countries, but having lived in 4: United States, Italy, Nicaragua, and Ghana.
Afronaut: You are truelly a traveller, which ones are your favourite countries? TJ: It is so difficult to decide a favorite country when there are so many places I love.
I feel like I have multiple homes because some places I just settle in so well, but if there was one country, that if I had an opportunity to move there, it would be Japan in a heartbeat.
I could still picture myself settling down somewhere in Africa or Latin America, but time will tell.
Afronaut: How many languages do you speak? TJ: At the moment I speak English, Italian, and Spanish, the official languages of the countries where I’ve lived.
My goal is to be conversational in French within the next year.
Afronaut:Last time we chilled together in Athens you told me you are a gymn fanatic, and do kickboxing. Are those your hobbies? TJ: I love Martial Arts, I have practiced multiple different style since I was very small.
If I had a martial arts gym near where I was staying right now, I would probably be there! Unfortunately, since returning to Ghana, the opportunity has limited me to home workouts.
Afronaut: What's your favourite food/cuisine? TJ: Another tough one, cuisine is real tough to decide…I would say West African cuisine is my favorite.
Whenever I leave the African continent I find myself looking everywhere to find a place that can make jollof rice.
Afronaut: You are studying International Law, what exactly does it entail? TJ: I am a major in International Relations at an American university in Ghana, and it is often involving research about political systems, leadership, current events all over the world, but we do have a focus on African relations.
During my exchange in Greece, we had a focus on southern Mediterranean relations.
Afronaut: Iam sure you are often the only white dude when you move around in Ghana, what's your perception of Africa? And why did you chose to study in Ghana? TJ: I find myself very comfortable here socially.
It has been extremely easy to make friends, as Ghanaians are some of the most welcoming people in the world.
Traveling throughout the region, I experienced almost no bad interactions.
I chose Ghana because, growing up, a majority of my friends were from Sierra Leone and Liberia, so I saw an opportunity to go somewhere in their region of origin and took it.
Afronaut: What must I do and definitely see when I visit the country Ghana? TJ: If you visit Ghana, you must visit the historical sites from the trans-Atlantic slave trade.
There is a lot of history here that explains a lot about the Americas today.
And of course, the local food, liquor, and life.
Make sure you don’t spend the whole time in the city!
Afronaut: TJ what are your future plans and do you ever plan on settling down? TJ: In terms of settling down, I don’t really put that much thought into it.
I have ideas of where maybe one day I would like to build a house, probably in Nicaragua, but I would like to be in a line of work that gives me constant opportunity to explore.
Afronaut: My man, many greetings to Ghana and keep safe in this hard time.
And where can travellers and interested people who want to explore Ghana and the USA contact you? Until we meet again,ciao. TJ:It was good talking to you Nessy like always, hope all is well in Europe and that we can re-link again when this virus bugs off!
FB: TJ Radomile