Tuesday, December 6, 2011

things we've learned...#3

 Back in August we had a couple of posts featuring some surprising things we've learned living in a foreign culture:

Now we're back with a few more surprising things we've learned...

*Corelle dishes are considered fine dining ware in some parts of the world.  The Corelle products here are sometimes displayed in locked glass cases in the department stores.

So are the most classy imported American cosmetics, like Maybelline and L'oreal.

*Are you late for an event?  It's no problem!  It's much better to show up late than not at all.  Even if you are two hours late for a party it's still the right thing to come.  And if you aren't able to attend an event, then send someone in your place as your representative.  It's the right thing to do.  This goes so against the grain for us as time-conscious Americans, but we are learning to go with the flow.

*Pedal-powered sewing machines are still alive and well.  And Amy wants one.

*It is possible to transport 15-foot lengths of rebar by lashing them to your bicycle.  Where there's a will, there's a way. But unfortunately there's no photo. 

*There's absolutely NO reason for an able-bodied taxi driver to waste precious gas to restart engines in order to inch forward in line for customers...instead they hop out and give those taxis a bit of a push!

*Small towels and washcloths are an indispensable accessory in the tropics.  They are often tucked down the back of the shirt, overlapping the collar, to absorb sweat, or worn on the head as protection from rain or from the hot rays of the sun.

*Those same hot rays are used as free drying power for this salon, whose employees hang the freshly laundered towels out to dry at the curb.

*It can be a very useful thing to have an off-switch on your doorbell.
Especially close to Christmas, when children come to carol every 20 minutes!

*Not all restaurant names are equally appealing.

*Fast food isn't all greasy...here a jeepney driver pulls over to be served a bag of fresh pineapple on a stick by a street vendor.

this is off-topic, but isn't the lettering in the jeepney great? 

*Not all movies are released first in the U.S.  Our family saw "The Adventures of Tin Tin" in the theater last night, though I hear it won't be released in the U.S. until the 16th?  And yes, if you're wondering...it's a great movie! We thoroughly recommend this one - lots of action, great animation, and characters and themes very true to the books.  What a great mix!

*Instead of greeting someone by asking, "How are you?" it's better form in this country to ask, "Where are you going?"   And if someone asks you this question, it's polite to answer vaguely, "Just there!" with a nod in some general direction. (Just as Americans would answer, "I'm fine! How are you?" even if we were suffering from a severe head cold)

Not wrong...just different.

So, where are you going?


Kay said...

I should be going straight to bed but instead I am reading your fun and educational blog post! :)

Judy said...

Actually Tin Tin will not be released here until Dec. 21!
Okay, is that sign for real? or just some joke you found online?

us5 said...

i took the photo of the sign outside a store somewhere near the Grand Canyon, on our cross-country trip in 2009.

hope you enjoy Tin Tin when it finally arrives! ;)