Saturday, 26 May 2007

Spotting Tourists

Number 1. Shorts. Virtually no man who lives here wanders around town in shorts. If visitors wear long trousers on the plane, they don't last long. Job #1 is to strip off, shower and don shorts and a T-shirt. The only exceptions are older gentlemen and Japanese visitors who both demand greater sartorial dignity.

So the burning question is how quickly do economic migrants (e.g. expats) flip from shorts-wearing tourist mode to local long pants? In my case, about 2 months, a random statistic I am going to arbitrarily state as the average.

Number 2. Cameras. Anyone taking a picture of a glass building is a tourist. And one clearly without the creativity to think of a better picture after having done the Merlion and the Durian concert hall.

There are other dead giveaways like maps, Swedish students with enormous backpacks and Japanese tour groups who all wear cotton hats and sensible shoes. But for me, it's the shorts and white knees.