17 Feb 2010

Cross-Cultural Conversations: OZ vs Asian.

It was a seriously hot day today. Seriously seriously hot. I didn't check the temperature, but it was one serious "hot wave" of a day. Is it always this hot during Chinese New Year?

South Korea has their "cold wave", but Malaysia has its "heat wave". In days like these, sometimes I do wish I was having the cold rather than the hot weather instead.

Anyways, if there is one thing I learnt from my conversations with a Brissie resident, our conversations confirmed some of my opinions. Some of which being,

Nature of Written Contracts: 

In my one year away from Australia, I have found that the way that Australians conduct their business does not necessarily bode well in most Asian countries. I put this in general to the Australians, as it is the only "caucasian" country that I have had exposure to, but the same could apply for other  white caucasian countries.

To use something a bit more concrete to relate to, if you have watched the musical "The King and I", the lady english teacher demanded that the Siamese King honour the contract of providing a house out of the palace for her. As most may know, she had a huge tiff with the king over this issue. Perhaps this was related to the typical way most Asians respond to a contract?

As one of my university mates found out, he found that employers in Hong Kong do not necessarily honour their employment contract.  The same I have found out, this applies too in Japan as well as in South Korea.

My own experience also has led me to believe it is the same in Malaysia as well... perhaps it doesn't apply in Singapore (since I do not know anyone there, but being a country in a 'hot spot" and political eye, they have every reason to be even more strict that all citizens follow the rule by the book).

Investing in Real Estate/ Property/ Creating Wealth/ Future Planning

If there is one thing I must say, most youngsters do not really plan their future. It is almost the same in most cultures. However, what I do know in general, that due to exposure to the asian community, many of the Australians are beginning to realise the importance of investing in real estate, and using it as a way to create "regenerating wealth".

Namely, the trend and act of investing in a property, and renting it out. The rental collected will pay some of the interest in the housing repayment loan, as well as the prospect of re-selling the house when the prices of property rise. Prices of house will always rise, but cars will always drop. In fact, it is always better to just buy a second hand car, but that is a different topic altogether. 

I can't remember where I heard this, (I think it was at some Australian bank) but most Australian senior folks sell off their homes and then go on a trip around the world. As said, due to the exposure of the asian community, many are beginning to realise the importance of leaving a heritage for their descendants. 

It is more an American as well as Asian concept, but I have never really experienced it in Australia, apart from the time in Sydney. Most of the homes which I rented to live in, or had known, were owned by Asians. Enough said.

Apart from that, these are other things I found out.
  • Haagen Dazs is not found in Australia.
  • To the question of : "the girl did not pressure me to get married though we are living together already for 7 years etc etc"  that I posed, this was the reply I received. 
Marriage, and even more, having kids seem to be a really scary proposition to males. Males would just enjoy dating forever and not get married if they have the chance to.

Hmm.. which is why, if the man I am going to date has any intention of starting with me, he had better be mentally and emotionally ready to tie the knot. The man can wait all he wants.

I will just find someone else who can make up his mind.

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