I Don’t Envy the People of London

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I love traveling. Somehow I feel like that's a big understatement but let's go with it, after all, the best things are usually understated. Much as I love the city of London and enjoy being there and acting cool or letting my guard down and being all touristy . I even like meeting people in my city and showing them the best spots. I  however, don't envy the people of London because of all the sports enthusiasts that will be flocking to the city. The London Olympic games will be kicking off tomorrow.

As much as I enjoyed the 2010 FIFA World Cup and having all those diverse and passionate soccer fans, I missed having my city. But we were also lucky that the matches and events were spread across the country so the sports fans moved around the country and were not confined to one city.

The Gautrain was still brand new, none of us were attached to it or had Gautrain preferences. I didn't expect a vibe and feeling when I walked into it because unlike native Londoners and the tube, it was as new to it as the tourists.

To help the visitors feel welcome and the hosts feel and seem hospitable an etiquette guide was drawn up and distributed. Visit Britain employees from the countries highlighted in the guide wrote the tips, which will be made available to other people working in tourism.  Here are some items that were included in said guide:

1. "Pouring wine backwards into a glass indicates hostility to an Argentinian. Also, don't be offended by Argentinian humor, which may mildly attack your clothing or weight." (Maybe there should be a guide for Argentinians about weight and women in general.)

2. "Avoid winking at someone from Hong Kong, because it's considered rude. When pointing, use your hand, not your index finger. Avoid mentioning failure, poverty, or death, as this risks offense."

3. "Do not be alarmed if South Africans say they were held up by robots, which is their term for traffic lights. "Howzit" is an informal way for them to say hello. Do not place your thumb between your forefinger and middle finger, as it is an obscene gesture."  And when someone calls you "boet" they're being friendly.

4. Avoid saying "thank you" to a Chinese compliment. Instead, politely deny the compliment to show humility.

5. "With Brazilians, steer clear of personal questions, especially on such issues as age or salary."

Will you be watching any of the events? Are you going to London? Let me know!

Happy Jetsetting.

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