My Bangladeshi Roommate! - Vikingess Voyages

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

My Bangladeshi Roommate!

This blogpost is dedicated to my friend and roommate during the past semester, the intelligent and warm-hearted Nazzina from Bangladesh! Although the GIP has a general rule that foreigners should share room with Koreans I ended up loosing my Korean roommate due to some unfortunate complications with her undergraduate school, and in the end the office let me and Nazzina share room instead.

My roommate is a true activist who has long experience in working for her countrymen for instance through her many years as an employee for the British Council. I have enjoyed her company a lot, and we have had many interesting discussions and shared information about issues concerning development and the status of our different countries. I have learned a lot from her, and as her kōhai I hope I can become as wise as her in the future.

Cultural exchange: Trying on my roommate's hijab!                                           
She has also been a bit troubled this semester due to the difficult situation in her home country. Just last year in November there was a big fire in one of the factories in the outskirts of Dhaka where over hundred people lost their lives, and one would have thought that the government had taken measures to ensure that the factories would be safer. But the collapse of the commerical building Rana Plaza on the 24th of April resulting in over 1000 deaths showed again how carelessly the political leadership and buisness leaders have dealt with the improvement of safety standards at the Bangladeshi factories. It was very frustrating for my roommate to see how such a big factory accident could happen again, only half a year after the previous Bangladeshi factory catastrophe that made headlines all over the world.

It is always nice to know that when you buy something it will actually benefit the person who spend their time making the things too. I wish that companies would be more transparent so that customers could have more information about where the money from their newly bought objects end up. Although most companies do not give out such information it is always possible to try and avoid the ones that are known to have bad practices when it comes to the ethical treatment of employers. There are also a number of companies that make ethical consideration a central part of their business. This is for instance a picture of a pencil case I got from my roommate from the Bangladeshi fair trade company Aarong!

A fair trade pencil case from Bangladesh
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About Anette
Anette came to Japan as an exchange student in 2010, met the love of her life and got stuck. From her base in Tokyo she writes about her experiences as a full-time worker in Tokyo and about her travels in Japan and abroad. She's a free-spirited adventurer who enjoys both the great outdoors and her urban lifestyle.

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About Me

Adventures ofAnette

A modern day shield-maiden who loves to explore the unbeaten paths of the world. From her base in Tokyo, Anette takes on both rural and urban challenges, and goes by the motto "No challenge too big, no adventure too small"!
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