Sonntag, 4. November 2007

homes away from home

i've often wondered what it feels like to be a citizen of an ex-colonial power visiting one of the former colonies. sitting in the lobby cafe of hotel timor the other day, i was surrounded by portuguese cops and teachers who addressed the local staff in portuguese; the coffee, wine, mineral water, beer, etc. were imported from portugal; the pastries were made locally but according to portuguese recipes and the tv in the corner was showing portuguese folk dances on rtp, the portuguese national tv channel. i wonder what i would feel if i'd come halfway across the globe to a dusty little city on a small island and would find cops, teachers, coffee, pastry, even folk dances from my country? would i feel that it was absurd? or would i feel warm and fuzzy all over? or would i think that its the most natural thing in the world?

mind you, you don't have to be a former colonial power to be in the business of carving up these little niches. at least both the australian and (mainland) chinese communities have also established similar homes away from home here...

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