Seeing home in a new light.
Who knew such a small, familiar country could hide such vast, new experiences?
Taking on the Brunei Tourism project wasn’t much different from taking a step into one’s backyard, and realising there were a hundred and one things we hadn’t discovered yet. Except, we had to categorise those hundred and one things into one comprehensive space.
A bit like an organised backyard shed, but with lots of clickable tabs and picturesque scenery.
For most of us at the beginning of the project, Brunei was like the lines on our palms; we know it all too well, except when we’re asked to describe how it looks like. And as we brainstormed and researched the attractions, the little-known waterfalls and the forests just a stone’s throw away from the city, we began to realise that there was more to Brunei than what we’ve always known our whole lives.
(Somehow, we’ve always known that too.)
And there were calls to places like the National History Centre, enthusiasm evident in their voices as they described a Brunei only recognisable in the school textbooks from another lifetime; there were road trips to explore lakes and waterfalls mere hours away from the closest shopping mall and we also took a leisurely walk among some of the world’s oldest skyscrapers, sustained by steel in air and suspended in time.
We rediscovered identity beyond the name of the place we were born, beyond citizenship papers and the convenience store two streets away from our home, that has seen us grow up, still buying the same snacks over ten years later.
And in the wake of numerous attractions (some of them in our own neighbourhoods), many tour packages and all the different ways of saying “discover” (we managed that alright, probably), we realised that tourists weren’t the only ones who found something of worth in this well-kept secret.
Us locals, born and bred Bruneian, also found a whole new story right in the heart of our own home.