When I had gone to Hong Kong, I had felt lost. I dint understand the language nor did they understand English. While in office, the chinese generally kept to themselves. Even though they were cordial to me, they kept their distance. While in a meeting with all chinese, the prominant language would be Cantonese, be it whatever! Chinese are too overcome by their language, culture, people and deem it better than anything in the world!
However, this wasnt a culture shock as I had been through such a shock when I was in Chennai for a week before heading to HK. The work culture there was no different. Everyone spoke Tamil. No one understood English. Tamilians mostly like to keep to themselves! While in a meeting, everyone would speak Tamil!! And I mean everyone! Once it so happened that I called up a systems guy and he started in Tamil. I was so pissed at him. I gave him a piece of my mind. But, its true! And anyone who has worked in Chennai will testify for the same. The language used in the offices is predominantly Tamil. No wonder then that most people from other states feel alienated when working in offices based in chennai!
Similarities dikhi? 🙂
[PS: I have studied in Chennai and thankfully was not subject to this. Some of the best people I have met are Tamilians. I guess this kind of behavior is more predominant in the earlier generation]