Sunday, November 24, 2013

It Was Important For My Vietnamese Friend to Deliver Fax

 Here is an impressive experience of mine in Vietnam. In 1996, all Asian advanced countries were so much interested in doing business with Vietnam or in Vietnam. We were looking for an opportunity to form a Joint Venture with Vietnamese company. Ho Chi Ming City, Sigon was full of people. They were riding bikes, circling around in the city, selling bags on streets, talking with each other in loud voice. They were full of energy. I always stayed in New World Hotel in Ho Chi Ming City. One weekend, my friend has his family schedule, so he excused leaving me alone for entire weekend. Honestly, I was glad that I could explore in the city. Saturday afternoon, I went out of the hotel entrance to walk. I tried to walk across to the other side of the front road. I could not do that. So many bikes and motorbikes were going around. Despite that Vietnamese people walk across the road, I could not find a moment even start walking across.

I walked around my hotel about half an hour founding no chance to walk across any part of the road. The traffic was not so fast but so heavy, I did not feel I could go across the road safely. After half an hour of effort in vain, I gave up and walked back in to my hotel. The hotel was modernized. They had western style restaurant, Chinese style food, exercise room, running machine, training bicycles, meeting rooms, communication rooms with PC and fax machines, and so forth. My stay was comfortable. Giving up exploring in the city, I started working on my computer. It was almost sun set when my room phone rang and my office colleague wanted to send me a fax document for me to work on. Having not so much things to do for the rest of the weekend, I was half glad I had something to do. I told him my fax number.

It was funny that I waited for more than 2 hours, my fax had not come in. I called hotel staff and they told me I received no fax. I called up Tokyo and found my colleague is still preparing for his fax. I told him I would go down and eat dinner. I had several beers in my dinner and came back to my room sleepy. I thought I could work on his fax next day. The next day is Sunday and I had no plan anyway. I crawled into bed and slept.

It was passed midnight I was awakened by someone who is loudly banging my door. Shaking sleepy head I woke up, dressed, and walked toward the door. I asked what it was. A hotel crew answered back loudly, "Sir, you received a fax". I was a little upset because I was disturbed my sleep. I slammed open the door and asked, "How come you did not just slide in the fax from the bottom of the door?" He looked a little surprised. He sounded wonder why my reaction was kind of harsh. He answered, "Well, sir, I thought the fax is needed to be delivered urgently. That is why they fax you, right, sir?" His answer backed me off. He is right. They faxed it because they needed to fax it to me. I explained that I was sleeping and half drunk. I thanked him and tried to tip him. He excused my tip and said he was glad he could be useful for me.

This hotel crew taught me that we could not react from our own judgment when we are in the different country, different cultural background.

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