Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Two days in Singapore

The wireless randomly started working today. It's Tuesday in Singapore so I've been here for about 2 and a half days now. I'm pretty sure the jetlag is gone by now.

It's been really incredible here. I walked in on Sunday in the middle of morning plenary roll calls and got to sneak up on some friends. It's really weird to see people that I'm used to seeing at UH in this situation, and kind of casts a weird light on the whole experience. I go from a tropical alien Singapore environment into an AIESEC conference room, where people are doing roll calls and some people from @US and @Houston are in there, but then next to them are people from @Japan, Taiwan, and China. It's surreal.

This has been the most diverse AIESEC experience so far. On exchange, it's all Chinese AIESECers, or Japanese, or when I'm at a national conference it's all Americans. I've never been surrounded by such a specific selection of people from all over the world. Almost all of Asia is represented, and then several people from Europe and the Americas. Anthropologically it's fascinating to compare the different shapes and sizes of people, and then start to pick up on clothing and language culture aspects. Apparently cuffing jeans is popular the world over right now, and Koreans and Japanese people use almost the same word for "work out." I'd never notice something like this without having such a perfectly diverse set of people stuck in a room together.

Singapore is goddamn hot. I did not bring enough shorts.

The parties have been really fun and really chill. It's refreshing after only being around US and Mexico parties where people go absolutely crazy. Hasn't been any puking and people have been way more focused on having a good time and meeting eachother than trying to hook up or outdrink eachother. It's been set up where countries team up to host a party, so the first night was, I think, Korea, and they brought Kimchi and stuff. Last night was, racistly enough, "white people," so US and Canada were in charge of hosting cultural events such as beer pong and kings cup. I licked syrup off the president of AIESEC International. I will take that experience with me forever.


There's some members of AIESEC Taiwan here, and they have been absolutely fantastic. I had no idea how cool my time will be in Taiwan next year as a vice president of sales for the nation until I met them. They are so outgoing, extroverted, and hilarious, and they have been making me feel very welcome. It's gonna be awesome next year.

Unbelievably, there was a Schlumberger representative at our Youth to Business forum yesterday. I've been trying to get a channel into that company in Houston for two years, and I randomly bump into this guy and find out they're headquartered in Singapore. He was invited to speak to AIESEC and realized how great of an organization we are, and so offered to be a communication link for getting dialogues started in Houston as well. Pumped.