I have the greatest privilege of being associated with Native cultures of many continents.. thus satisfying my curiosity and desire to travel and the chance to help them with my medical expertise. these notes are from those travels. I am a professor at the University of Havana
dimanche 20 août 2017
A TALE OF TWO CITIES; NEW YORK AND DOHA, A GOOD METAPHOR FOR DECLINE
TALE OF TWO CITIES: IN A MATTER OF HOURS.
GOOD METAPHORNEW YORK AND DOHA
travel from Havana to Doha, one has to transit either in Miami or New York and
this time I arrived the night before close to midnight at the La Guardia
Airport, to go to a Hotel and then catch the morning flight to Doha.
I arrived at LGA I couldn’t believe that I was in a developed country and not
in Sudan or Eritrea. It was chaotic, people frenzied and impolite. A passing
thunderstorm had added to their woes.
airports in developing countries are better than La Guardia. Even a poor
country like Cuba has a better airport! Bogota, Panama, Sao Paolo, Buenos
Aires, Santiago de Chile, KL, Siem Reap every single of those airports are more
modern, more user friendly and less chaotic.
lack of interest in the infrastructure is but a metaphor of what is happening
in the USA where the comfort of the traveling public is last of the
was taken to the hotel that was only 2 km away. Like the receptionists at the
hotel he was from India. They had acquired their American efficiency and
forgotten their oriental hospitality. They were robots and within minutes I was
directed to a room, at this Comfort Inn, which felt more like a dungeon, with
the barest of amenities. In fact in USA and European hotels, I have come to
expect nothing, but a place to sleep to catch the connecting flights.
functional, no social interactions, much like a supermarket rather than a place
(functional not exuding welcome at one of the rooms of the Comfort Inn near La Guardia Airport, New York City)
politely refused their “continental” breakfast knowing the horrors that lurked,
such as artificial yoghurts and cereals out of the box with weak coffee and
tea. After all I was flying Qatar Airways, the best airlines in the WORLD and I
know they would look after me.
a quick check in and security, I was at the British Airways Lounge and a
suitable but small breakfast awaited as I was preparing for my flight to Doha.
arrival in Doha, it is incredible to see that, like in New York, the service
industry is full of people from India and Philippines but more definitely
welcoming and friendly.
Uber driver from the hotel in New York to the Airport was a Muslim from Kashmir
who barely spoke English and my Uber driver who took me to Marriott Hotel in
Doha was a Muslim from Bangalore. It is Globalization, is also culturally based,
brothers in different destinations, one is cold and efficient as their American
hosts and the other warm and hospitable like their Qatari hosts.
the German Front Desk manager at Marriott Marquis City Centre in Doha said: the
hotel industry in Persian Gulf Countries is so much more hospitable and
personal and is of exceptional quality.
West has mechanized itself, as can be seen even in Health Care, and become
efficient but lost that most important quality: Human Touch.
Mamim, meaning Mothers Love in her native Limbu language, is from Nepal
(Nice to see a Hospitality intern from Penang in Malaysia, good luck to him)
had stayed at the hotel only once before, but so many people greeted me: nice
to see you again, when you think I am one of the many faces that pass through!
entering the Executive Club where at the Happy Hour they served a sumptuous array
of snacks, Manisha from India and Samjahna from Nepal greeted me warmly and I
made a new friend, Stansy, a Shona from Zimbabwe living in Cape Town.
a few hours on a non-stop flight you enter another world of hospitality. I
cannot believe any sane traveller would prefer the sterile efficiency of the
USA Comfort Inn to the warm human qualities of Marriott at Doha!
Marriott is an
American Company but it seems they leave their sterile efficiency and embrace
the Arabian hospitality when they are in Doha.
am happy to be in Doha.
Afternoon snacks at the Happy Hour at the Executive Lounge at Marriott Marquis Hotel in Doha