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Asia - 1999
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During August - September of 1999 I went on a 5 week business trip to China, Japan, Hong Kong and Australia. and back to China. This was my first opportunity to see the culture and environments of this far away (for me) part of the world.

I ended up traveling to Shanghai twice and although I never got to see any real nature with the exception of Australia, I thoroughly enjoyed this part of the world and would recommend a similar journey to anyone.

I was especially struck at how different each place was from my expectations, which I guess were based on what I learned a long time ago. The world has changed significantly in the last few decades. The influence of multinational companies, like McDonalds, Toyota, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Haagen-Dazs and technologies like satellite television, wireless telecommunications and the internet should not be underestimated.

I only skimmed the surface of the cultures that I was hosted by, but partially because I was on a business trip, I did learn a lot from the local people that I worked with that if I were a tourist would probably have been locked away from me. Although the commercial culture is rapidly merging into a world view as opposed to a local view, there are still significant differences in the way each of the cultures view the world and each other.

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