Round tables are commonly found in Chinese restaurants and in Chinese households. Beautifully 4 dishes 1 soup ideal meal of the day is perhaps the highlight of the most important meal. In Chinese households, do you stumble upon real authentic family scenarios where family members don’t sit together on the round table to eat, instead, they are spread to places like eating in the living room; eating next to the computer desk, eating in the study room, etc? Do you question yourself why, why are they not eating together on this purposely designed round table?
Have you ever felt disturbed by your Chinese friends when they drink something hot particularly LOUD? You wondered to yourself what was wrong to the education of their childhood learning process. Did their parents not tell them to lower their voice when they drink hot drinks? And then, when you went to Chinese restaurants, you were astonished by the fact that you were the different one, practically everyone in the restaurants are drinking out loud. You said to yourself once again, are you the strange one or are they?
The 5th of May marked in the Lunar calender is a very important holiday for the Chinese society. The so-called Duanwu Festival also known as the Dragon Boat Festival has been long celebrated by Taiwan, China, Singapore, Malaysia.
Yes, you must have. You must all have the experience of savoring Chinese cuisine in Chinese restaurants and were confronted with the utensils laying right in front of you that looked so unfamiliar. Of course, as always, there are forks and knives somewhere available. But, standing right in front of you being wrapped nicely with a Chinese cloth, you might have perhaps started to wonder…”should I give it a try? What is there to lose anyway? I am here in a Chinese restaurant, I am here to indulge and experience cultural differences!”
“Have you eaten?” is often the first thing elders ask when they see you. Rather than the traditional greeting sentence “How are you?”, Chinese people are way more familiar being asked or having to ask “have you eaten?” to others. Did you ever have the experience as a foreigner visiting a Chinese family, and realized the first thing the Chinese hosts ask you was “Have you eaten?”
A slice of bread or even a few slices for dinner might be a normal dinner meal for you, as a Westerner. However, have you ever tried offering a piece as well to your Chinese friends and was confused with the facial expression you got in return? Don’t worry, we as Chinese would not ask you directly in the face “Hey, is that it? Just a few slices for dinner?” In fact, what we honestly think in our mind is full of question marks and exclamation marks trying to figure out if that friend is on a diet or is just too tired to cook some hot food.
Have you ever been shocked to sit next to your group of Chinese friends and realized where does all this noise come from? Yet all of a sudden, you realized that it is YOUR Chinese friend next to you chewing like a cow? Oh god, how embarrassing is that?!