Thursday, 26 June 2008


I was reading an article on International Herald Times when one article stands out. Visa limits undermine Beijing's tourism. What with the earthquake, and government officials trying to limit entry to foreigners, tourism has declined.

But what interests me is this:

Indeed, after years of preparation and mammoth building projects centered on this city's playing host to the Olympics, including teaching thousands of taxi drivers English and instructing local citizens on how to queue up in line (not something common here), Beijing is looking a little less welcoming for foreigners.

I find it hilarious actually. If Olympics had been hosted in any Asian country, the government would have to teach the locals to queue up. For example food at restaurants.

I was at this buffet dinner on the way to Norway in a cruise. Everyone was starving because it was the second seating already and hundreds had to wait as the waiters refilled all the trays and added more food. Finally when all the trays were ready everyone rushed in to get their seats and rushed to the buffet tables. But, everyone still queued up for food. No cutting the queue, no pushing or jostling. Still polite. Most of the people present were English and Norwegians.

Now, if this was Malaysia, people cut in here and there with no sorry's, excuse me's and there would definitely be jostling among the people. And swearing.

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