Monday, December 10, 2012

The world has become a Walmart

I have been through three international airports in the span of 24 hours - Paris, Dubai and Bengaluru. A decade back, this would have very exciting to me because being in transit was the only way I would be physically close to the city. Being in transit also means checking out what the city has to offer in terms of products and brands. But this time around, it was not at all exciting. All the airports looked the same. No, they didn't look the same. They were the same.

The first shop I noticed in Dubai was the perfume shop. Then there was the alcohol shop and tobacco shop right opposite it. All the brands displayed on the shelves were the same as that was displayed in the major shops in Paris. If that was not enough, I came across a seafood restaurant in Dubai. It bore the same name and also the layout as the one I saw in Paris a few hours back. That is when it stuck me. It is just like a Walmart. You find the same products arranged in the same shelves no matter which Walmart you go to in any part of the world.

I like the concept of world becoming small. That is why we can be at the other end of the world within 24 hours. This is indeed convenient when you are an expatriate. But when all the world looks the same, there is no more fun in traveling. Sometimes, a bit of local color and variety adds to a lot.



  1. So true. I just hope they don't replicate the landscape and landmark of each place, so that looks same as well!

    1. Well, all the shops look alike now. I think it is only a matter of time when suburbs would look all the same. :)

  2. Exactly the point that I want to make...

    With so much of standardization, things lose newness and one feel the same wherever one goes.

    1. Finally, we will understand the idiom. Familiarity breeds contempt.


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