Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Concept of Westerner

Who is westerner in the eyes of people from South\East Asia. I guess this really depends on level of education, as the higher level of society who travel all over the world already see the differences between people with white skin…  But majority of locals, especially in Indonesia, they just put us to the same box, they have never heard or thought we are different. Actually Europeans divide themselves in so many categories, depends on location of the country, as west, east, south and north…
Who is really Westerner in the Europe? France, Germany, Netherlands, GB, Belgium and so on? What about a new category East Westerner? Where you can put all other states east from Germany? It can be easily said so for people from Asia, yes, we are westerners but the east one, sometimes we earn double or triple less than our neighbours on the real “west” and so on and so on… there are many stereotypes about Europe and inside Europe, because especially nowadays, situation is very relative, because if you lucky to have a job even not so well paid as in other countries in Europe, maybe you are just luckier than somebody with no job, living in one of that real west country.. but also in Europe there is many social benefits, something not so well know in SEA {south east asia], like people can get support from government for theirs studies and when they are unemployed, if they belong to right category to have right to get it… And there is difference in every state of Europe, even not so big difference sometimes, and they are certain difference in every state of European Union as well. Europe is not same as a European Union…:]
So that is the brief introduction to European situation and concept by Westerner, because not every tourist or visitors of SEA would agree with concept of Westerner for himself. Because with concept of Westerner, there is many stereotypes in it, like Westerner like this and that… For example in Thailand Westerners like to go to Phuket and Pattaya so then local people get confused if there happened to be visitors with different aim or purpose of visit..
The same in Indonesia, in majority of case, people just see money in foreigner, in westerner and they are not really interest where do we come from and if we really have money. So people in Indonesia they have offered me several times trips to the islands, again, and they do not really can or want understand that not every visitor from Europe is not interest in touristic visits of island by boat, for incredible prize, just  1 or 2 millions IRP. People love their stereotypes and once they have some ideas about people coming from abroad, they do not like to change this idea, they want to keep their stereotypes. For example if first of all to some place in Sumatra came many visitors from Germany and they buy many local products and do not bargain so if after that come visitors form Czech for example and behave differently, want to get low local prize and do not buy so much as previous visitors, local can get confused and still compare this visit with previous visit or do not want to give local prize, because once already sell for higher prize…
The similar situation I experienced in Chiang Mai on north of Thailand, where drivers of local city buses are spoiled by “rich” tourists, I say rich, because they are ok to pay double prize than local and then if somebody with same white face want to pay local prize so they do not like to give this prize.. So when I go in Chiang Mai from train station to the city centre, I had to pay 50 Bhat but on return, one nice Thai girl speak to driver and burgain for me local prize 20 Bhat to train station, but when driver see that this prize is for somebody like me, in his eyes visitor with money, he wanted back more, but once bargain, can not cancelled, so I luckily get local prize… But It makes me think about, because I consider this situation “local spoiled by tourists who are able to pay more… “ and then for future generation of visitors it can be like disaster because all prizes will be higher… 
In Delhi, In India, same situation, in Backpackers home on Main Bazaar, near train station, prizes for hostel go up, because owner of the guesthouse know that he will find “westerners” who are able to pay it, who do not mind to pay more, who are “lazy” to bargain the real prize..  So again this lazyness of bargain, to search a real prize will turn against us. So while for some westerners is too pay little more is nothing in their wallet, they are other westerners for whom is too pay little bit more every times while they are travelling a new unwelcome expenses which maybe leads to shorten their trips..  So.. and then, inside European minds, European from non\real west with not so high income do not feel same as the real Westerners if they ever exist, they know they are different but not any more in the eyes of local people, for Indonesian people usually all Westerners are same Buleeee..  :]

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