Blue and hazel ones actually. :)
Before I came over to the wild, wild east, I'll admit to having my own horrible misconceptions about the place! Little Hut in the Jungle would be the gist of it. Blame it on too many reruns of The Sleeping Dictionary. Loin-clothed headhunters, ill-equipped longhouses and lush rainforests everywhere. Didn't even expect a supply of running water! Had fearful visions of collecting rainwater from a dirty well every morning in a leaky bucket.
Quite happy to have all my ill-conceived notions overturned when I came here of course. Hell, the place is almost a city.
Which isn't exactly what the foreigners want when they come here. Glossy advertising brochures proclaim a mystical jungle paradise where intrepid tourists come seeking the elusive proud headhunter - only to have themselves confounded upon discovering a prosperous little hamlet with all the physical accoutrements of a developing city instead.
Tourist : Why, they even have cellphones!
Paul : You expected smoke signals?
Tourist : Not really. But perhaps running messengers?
Paul : Bearing parchment across crocodile-infested rivers to the nearest longhouse?
Tourist : Exactly! Too much development would have a negative impact on the local culture and lifestyle.
Paul : I think the natives would prefer electricity and running water.
Tourist : It's almost like home! Like any other cookie-cutter city back in the west!
Paul : You wouldn't want to see the local Starbucks then?
Tourist : Damned western imperialism. OMG. Is that girl holding an iPad?
Paul : Lo and behold, this is no longer the heart of darkness!
Tourist : Damned civilization!
Turns out it's far too much of a concrete jungle for their tastes! No doubt they'd been hoping I'd paddle over in my riverboat sampan to pick them up! :) You can imagine I teased them about it.
Welcome to the jungle!
While I'm of the opinion that neon-lit stripmalls should cover the earth, obviously some of the travellers would much prefer the dark-skinned natives happily frolicking in the tropical sun clad in threadbare loin-cloths sans cellphones.
But I do see their point of view. Are we changing much too fast? Moving from tropical jungles to traffic jams? Surely between the two extremes of overzealous development and maintaining the local culture, there's a nice balance to be had.
Just hope Miri finds it.