LillyRai Smith Posted over 2 years ago How will travel change local places in the future? The homogenisation of global cultures: a 2 edged sword? On the one hand overt commercialisation of brand identity permanently alters the face of 'local identity' on the other it reminds us that everyone who walks this earth shares one human community: that of 'mankind'...I am a world citizen. 'Local' on the other hand is what gives a sense of belonging; local knowledge gives us a sense of ontological security. Local knowledge is of itself a valuable & useful commodity. Paradoxically cultural difference is what unites us. To learn about another human being from the point of view of their cultural difference is what makes human communication unique. I am 'white-British' born and bread but have spent over 23 years travelling between the UK and China....my friends in China are as real and cherished as my friends in the UK. If 'home is where the heart is' and 'home' is bounded by a sense of 'local' then specific towns and villages in both China and the UK are 'local' to me. I train 'buddies'/ personal assistants for independent business and tourist travellers to China because I want everyone to share this sense 'local', of security and belonging, gained through having a 'buddy', a 'cultural translator' translator with local knowledge. Recognising a global brand in a remote destination affects a certain juxtaposition: of comfortable recognition tinged with lamentation; but recognising a 'friend' through understanding cultural difference (particularly when there is linguistic difference too) evokes no such inner conflict. 'Local' may 'look' different in different cultures and geographic settings but it is evoked through local knowledge, through recognition, through a sense of ontological security, through a sense of belonging.