July 20, 2024



One of the delights of travel is discovering, observing, and enjoying the local culture and customs of your destination.  In Japan I was continually amazed by the gracious nature of the people.  Without exception I experienced the Japanese to be considerate and courteous.  Their polite and quiet culture and customs make the visitor feel much welcomed.  Even though Japan has a very dense population, the culture places value on tranquility, calmness, and interpersonal consideration.

With this as my sole background experience for travel in Asia, I have been doing some research for an upcoming trip to China.  I ran across an article titled: “How To Tell If You Have Been In China Too Long,”  by Brendon (so far I haven’t discovered his last name).   Here are the points he made in his article —– Basically he reports that you can tell that you have been in China too long if:

You stop saying sorry or excuse me when you accidentally bump people

You allow your children to openly urinate on the street

You always take the front seat when you catch a taxi

You never use the seat belt when you catch a taxi

You never ever leave home with out toilet paper/tissues

You never clean up your dog’s poo when walking it in the street

You stop cleaning your tray at McDonald’s or KFC

You stop smiling or being friendly to service staff

You no longer feel that yelling into a mobile phone at restaurants is rude or unusual

You start littering and dumping your trash on the street instead of the bin

You automatically haggle when ever you buy something

You now believe that queuing and waiting in line is for losers

You give in to peer pressure and start smoking every where. Lifts, restaurants, taxis…..

You have adopted the habit of loudly hawking and spitting

You never used to use your car horn, now you use it constantly at the slightest provocation

You are no longer worried about disturbing people and make as much noise as you want when ever you want where ever you are

You have given up on direct communication and are always looking for the implied meaning

You can no longer understand why copying and bootlegging is illegal outside China

Now I’m sure that Brendon has offered this article with perhaps a bit of “over the top” – tongue in cheek humor.  But I must admit it still got me wondering ……..   What have I gotten myself into?   So ………. I am taking a deep breath and reminding myself that travel is always an adventure and it is best approached with an open mind.   Still, from Brendon’s article it seems that quite possiblyI am in for a rather different experience in China compared to my journey to Japan.    Time will tell.  

If you would like to check out the entire article and read some of Brendon’s other works you can do so at his web site: click here..     Meanwhile I’m heading out to buy some travel packets of toilet paper as well as some ear plugs – just in case!

As always ………… Enjoy The Adventure!

Dr.B, The Photo Trekker