Friday, May 13, 2016

Tourist Season

I've just read that Chinese police officers are on the beat in Rome and Milan. Only a few for now, but chances are more are on the way. They are there to give the Chinese tourists a greater sense of security - one of Italy's efforts to woo Chinese business. Will we soon see Chinese police keeping the queue moving and making sure that their group gets in first? How much does Italy, or Europe, want that business?

The last time I was in Bath, I couldn't get near the Abbey. In the end I just took pictures of the courtyard full of Chinese tourists.

When I was in graduate school, I had a Chinese classmate who used to joke that there were spies planted among the Chinese students to make sure they behaved correctly or risked being sent home. Now that they are wearing uniforms, people who are wary of them at home seem grateful to see them abroad.

My Chinese friend married a nice Jewish girl from Philadelphia. I don't know how his government felt about that. Maybe they would have intervened had he been an engineer instead of a sociolinguist.

7 comments:

  1. Italy - which otherwise I like deeply, so much that I try to learn their language - is behaving in some ways very strange. Think of the naked statues they covered when Muslim state visit arrived.

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    1. You are right. I hadn't associated this with the stculpture covering, but both are extreme measures to accommodate. Italy is so dependent on tourism. Let's hope they don't start routinely covering artworks to entice Middle Eatern tourists.

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  2. How odd Shawn ..... I can remember being in Broadway in the Cotswolds and the Chinese outnumbered everyone ..... not the policemen though !!!! XXXX

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  3. I walked into The Bell today, and there was a tourist guide to all the Bath attractions on the bar - in Chinese........

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    1. I'll be sure to pick one up on my next trip. It will be a fitting souvenir.

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  4. I met a Chinese taxi driver from Beijing in a sleeping-car on a train in Italy. He was doing a 14-day tour of Europe and only living in trains. It was 10 years ago. I asked him what he had for a taxi and he said it was a VW Passata and predicted in 20 years all the world's cars would be made in China. Only 10 years left to go . . .

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    1. What a clever way to travel if you only want to spend one day in each city. He might be right about the cars if they manage to steal the self-driving technology.

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