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Cultural Differences

To Enjoy a Party
by Ritsuko

 

Without studying English conversation and British-Australian manners, I started living with my host family in Sydney. Every weekend, they held a home party that gave me great lessons to help me with my hesitations.

“Which one do you want with your apple pie, whipping cream or vanilla ice cream?” my host mother asked me at the counter.

“Eh? Ice cream or . . .” I didn’t feel like dessert right after dinner, so I was wondering how I could excuse myself nicely.

“Both!” My host father cheerfully replied instead of me; he brought me a large piece of pie topped with both ice cream and whipping cream. My indecision had lead to a misunderstanding.

I felt very awkward with the guest sitting beside me. She easily avoided the dessert, smiling at him, saying, “No, thanks. I’m full.” How simple and smart!

Dealing with my weakness, I’ve since learned how to enjoy a party with people from overseas.

Keep Smiling

A smiling face attracts people, gives a good impression, which encourages you to be positive.

Be Honest

Say clearly what you would like to drink or eat when you are asked. If you are weak in English conversation, it is better to mention to a person, “I’m learning English.” By this phrase, she or he would adjust speaking for you, and it would also expand the conversation.

Observe People Talking

Give a lot of care to others’ actions and words and belongings. Catch some interesting points from people to get an opportunity to chat with them.

Be a Good Listener

Listening attentively is a favourable manner that would satisfy others' feelings. Give some questions or comments to their speeches.

Find a Leader

Shy? That’s all right. Just seek someone who is the most talkative at a party. Then stay with her or him. If you are lucky, if the person is generous, she or he might take care of you during the party.

Help the Host or Hostess

Helping a host or hostess is beneficial. You will be allowed to enter the kitchen to make yourself busy. It also gives you a chance to approach others by serving them. Besides, they may appreciate your kindness.