29 June 2011

Spot the American!

Click on the photo to enlarge. Yes, the Little Mermaid is *really* that little...
Whether it's your first time outside the country or your 20th trip through Tokyo, whether you're on vacation or making a business presentation, dressing appropriately for international travel seems to be a particular challenge for us Americans.

I took this photo a couple weeks ago in Copenhagen at the Little Mermaid statue. The cruise ships were in town with tourists from all over, and there were also package tour groups in the city that day from Korea and Hong Kong.

Not that everyone was dressed as fashionably as the Scandinavians in this photo, but I think you can tell which person was the American.

And if you can see the difference, so can a pickpocket, or a beggar, or someone with an axe to grind, or a security officer who wants to impress his superiors. The point isn't to look Asian when you're in Asia - although wearing clothing that works with the climate is important - the point is to NOT look like a negative stereotype.

If you're traveling to adopt a child - or on a sales call - or just there to sightsee - remember that the quality of your experience overseas often depends on how others see you. You could be treated like a country bumpkin, or you could be treated with respect. You don't need to look like a fashion model; you do need to wear clothes that fit you well. Try your outfits on before you go, and look at yourself in the mirror.

Saggy pants and shirts that don't cover your belly? Clothes that are too big? Baseball caps? Leave them at home. 

Some entries on weninchina.com that may help include -

04 June 2011

Hong Kong Stopover Guide - now published!

My wife, daughter, and I spent Thanksgiving week 2010 in wonderful Hong Kong, and we would happily go back in a heartbeat. The people are so genuinely nice, the food is so scrumptiously good, and there are so many fun things to do. And even having spent a week there, we could easily come up with another week's worth of activities!

We've posted an overview of the city to familiarize you with its neighborhoods, what things cost, how to get around, and access to the airport. And you can link to the videos we've recently published from there, too!

01 June 2011

Video - Hong Kong Victoria Harbour

Day or night the narrow strait separating mainland Kowloon from Hong Kong Island is abuzz with activity that kids of all ages will find fascinating. There are many family-friendly museums on the waterfront, and shopping malls and hundreds of food vendors are in easy walking distance. The Star Ferry is the traditional way to cross the harbor and only takes a couple minutes. At 8:00 every night, the city puts on a massive light, music, and laser show, using most of the skyscrapers on both sides of the harbor. Tourists and locals line up along the water for the spectacle, and everyone leaves with smiles.

This is our third Hong Kong video, and I think we may have good footage from our trip there last November for one or two more. Visit our YouTube channel to see them all!