*cue bass-thumping House music here*
Oh god, too early (late?) for that. I've arrived at Hong Kong airport after what felt like a two-day flight from New York. That was the worst. We were served our first meal two hours after boarding, I cued up The Social Network, and then proceeded to sleep for two hours. I woke up, read a little, and thought, OK, glad I killed most of this trip. I looked at the computer screen five inches away from my face to see how much longer till we got to Hong Kong: 12 HOURS AND 48 MINUTES.
I wanted to jump.
But that's over, and now I'm sitting in the gate for Bangkok across from a Canadian couple, using an Indian man's charger to keep my laptop alive, and am hearing accordion music playing "Champs Elysees" and the likes over the airport loudspeakers. Gotta hand it to you, Globalization. You didn't skip a beat. Funny, too, because the program required us to read some literature on globalization, the pros and cons of it and how it can be made to work for the betterment of the world. We'll delve into the topic of globalization much further during orientation, but the refresher was much needed. For those who need reminded themselves, globalization means that everyone knows how to speak English so that Americans feel more comfortable traveling abroad to spread their worth among all the developing nations! At least, in some circles this is what it implies.
I don't really believe that, but I will say, it was damn convenient when having to interact with a TSA security guard. I was pulled aside because my tiny pink makeup bag screamed "I BELONG TO A TERRORIST." He instructed me to pull everything out, including a book on Buddhism, Half the Sky, and A Crime so Monstrous. Thank god I decided to leave my Moltovs for Dummies at home. He dumped out the contents of my makeup pouch to find an eyeshadow compact, tweezers (what, I'm Italian), nail clippers, and mascara. Because Hong Kong has dual official languages of Chinese and English, he had to keep any insulting jabs to himself, rather than shouting them to his co-workers in another language when I stood right in front of him. Hah, take that, TSA man!
I wish I could regale you with greater, more exciting tales of immediate culture shock here on my first trip abroad. But since I have not been out of an airport since 2am yesterday (Tuesday), I haven't had much in the ways of human interaction, let alone culture shock. I did see a sign in the bathroom that read, "Beware slippery floor" that made me chuckle. Like the slippery floor is out to getcha! But I'll get my fill and then some starting tomorrow morning when I wake up in Bangkok, on my first day of studying abroad!
*cue optimistic symphony music here*