Photo Credit: Photo courtesy of Antoine Clinton
The Black Expat: 'In Bali, The Color Of My Skin Is Not Viewed As A Weapon'
Antoine Clinton moved to Bali in 2017 and told Travel Noire that he hasn’t looked back.
Clinton said prior to moving to Bali, he was working and living in the Middle East but knew he wanted to relocate to a tropical place to focus on his entrepreneurial endeavors.
“I’d come to terms that after my contract was complete, I would focus on my entrepreneurial goals full-time and I needed the atmosphere that only a tropical atmosphere could provide,” he told Travel Noire.
He narrowed his relocation options to Sri Lanka and Bali but the deciding factor was Bali’s infrastructure.
Three years later, he said Bali is a great place for Black expats, adding that he feels safer in Bali than in the United States. In an interview with Travel Noire, Clinton discussed the benefits of living in Indonesia’s popular destination:
Travel Noire: What do you find are the benefits of living in Bali?
CLINTON: There are many benefits of living in Bali, almost too many to name, but if I had to name my top five, they would be: 1.) The decreased cost of living, especially as it pertains to “lifestyle” benefits 2.) Readily access to positive health and wellness rituals in a non-invasive way 3.) There’s something for everyone to do 4.) It’s a safe and community-driven society, and 5.) The cultural experiences are non-stop!
Travel Noire: Do you feel accepted in Bali or at least comfortable as a Black man? Could you explain why?
CLINTON: ABSOLUTELY! In Bali, me being a male or black is not viewed as a weapon and/or a license to mistreat me or others like me.
Having experienced varying levels of conflict in my travels, Bali, in particular the Balinese people, have never provided me with any examples of overt racism.
Any type of racial confrontation I’ve experienced here has been minimal, not by local officials, and from people not native to Indonesia. I actually feel safer here than in my home country. Between everyone being so welcoming and concerned about your overall experience and welfare here in Bali, you instantly feel the local community’s support in having your best interest at heart.
Anyone that is considering relocating from their current location to one where your culture, money, business, and community are accepted and where you can feel comfortable while exploring the best sides of you and your family, consider Bali.
Bali provides an affordable, relaxed, and foreign-friendly tropical environment to explore health and wellness opportunities, business ideas and make a significant and long-term social, cultural, and economic impact. The “Black in Bali Community (BIBC)” is galvanizing and thriving; so, there’s already family here to help you along your journey. You’re not alone!
Travel Noire: What has moving abroad taught you about yourself?
CLINTON: I’ve had the pleasure of living abroad in a full-time work capacity surrounded by brick & mortar high-rises and as a full-time entrepreneur working on the beach; in the majority of both circumstances, I felt alone.
Luckily in Saudi, more American consultants eventually joined the team, and here in Bali, I’ve plugged into the BIBC. So, moving abroad has taught me that I thrive best when there is a tangible support network that I can “plug” into for whatever reasons. Whether it be business-related or personal, it feels good to exchange information and ideas with individuals with whom you share cultural foundations and norms. That’s what the BIBC does for me; reinforcement that I have family everywhere!
Travel Noire: Is there anything else you want to tell us that I didn’t ask you that you feel is important for this story?
CLINTON: Bali is a place that has so much potential for BIPOC and a place where our culture is appreciated. But just as much as we have to offer, Bali provides so much more. From the people, food, religion/tradition, culture, and unsurpassable beauty, one instantly feels a soul-level change upon arrival.
As with any foreign land, always remain cautious, vigilant, and obey the laws, and watch this island quickly become your paradise!