More than five years ago I was starting to dream going to Dutch, a land of tulip. Because of study on forest botany, I need to go there in order to visit the biggest herbarium in the world. As an international herbarium, ‘Leiden’, it is commonly called, has many specimens of herbarium from all over the world, included Indonesian’s herbarium that they collected during occupying period. It will be very fascinating and enjoyful if I can stay minimum 1 month to study on this herbarium. Off course, also enjoy the beauty of tulip as a country flower and look around other local tourism objects.
Googling about Dutch and its map, mainly the information of international herbarium is the first step I did. Knowing more information such as climate, transportation, currency, main tourism object, etc. makes me more comfortable. I will be ready with some alternatives and no many questions on the way. I hope that everything (activities) can be done as far as possible and controlled by myself 🙂
As an ‘almost’ English country (Most of local people can speak English, isn’t it?), I imagine that I face maybe just a little problem about communication. So that it will be easier using the local transportation, asking the route, buying something, communicating each other and other daily activities. Dutch is also popular as tourism country, which provides good tourism facilities, mostly local people familiar with foreigner, keep warm and smile. I hope that these local habits could support me to get helping in an emergency condition.
The next step is to try getting local friend, especially around or close to the main destination. A short chatting by online facility (YM, FB, Skype etc.) is one way to crosscheck all information that are previously obtained. If nobody there, asking friend or friend of friend who visited the same destination to be another alternative. This way ensures that information, as far as possible, is up to date. Sometimes, local friend will also be very helpful. They look like local guide. Guide for everything: hotel or rent house, food, transportation, etc. 🙂
*) Homework of Intercultural Communications’ Class (26th November 2010): What kind of information do you need if you are going to foreign country? Please select one country and why do you choose it?