Hugo Greenhalgh of the Financial Times writes of the time he spent working on PR in Georgia, the former Soviet state.
When I moved to Georgia in 2001, I stopped being gay. Wham bam bang — that was me back in the closet. For almost four years. Admittedly, it was my choice to work for a dictator of a seamy seaside state nestling on the border with Turkey — I’d gone there to work for a local television station, but ended up effectively being his PR. My company didn’t send me — the only person responsible for moving to a country where homosexuality, while not illegal, was hugely frowned upon, was me.
He liked the country, even though he had to stay in the closet while he was there.
I fell in love with Georgia. And, almost 10 years on from when I was asked to leave — after a Georgian MP called me the Lord Haw-Haw of the Caucasus — I am now considering buying a flat overlooking the Black Sea coast. … My main concern is the level of homophobia in Georgia. Do I want to buy a flat in a country where I could be a target?
Sometimes you have to follow your heart, not your logic.