I used to be driving by means of Mississippi, about 10 years in the past, as a British vacationer enroute to Memphis.
Stopped at a roadside gasoline station/fast-food place. There was one other fast-food place throughout the road, however we simply stopped on the one on the aspect of the highway we have been travelling on.
Walked into the meals place (cannot keep in mind which model, perhaps McDonald’s) and the shoppers all instantly stopped speaking and turned to look.
They have been all African American, I am white. I simply assumed that they have been shocked to see somebody so white (Scottish, no tan!)
On the counter, the workers member mentioned, “Are you positive you do not need to eat throughout the highway?” She appeared nervous. I used to be completely clueless and simply mentioned, ‘No, we’re tremendous.”
As quickly as she heard the accent, it was like she relaxed, simply requested the place we have been from and many others. She made a remark, one thing alongside the strains of the world not being one of the best, be careful the place you go.
It was such a shock to comprehend that in some locations, the primary response to me strolling into a spot, might be concern or concern. I might by no means skilled that earlier than.
ohno551 13. France appeared so unusual
Actually the quantity of individuals below 18 years outdated who smoke in France shocked me.
I used to be on change in a French highschool and anytime children had free time, earlier than faculty, recess, lunch, free durations, a couple of quarter of your entire faculty would go outdoors to the bus cease for a smoke.
Even the lecturers. The sidewalk could be packed and there have been cigarette butts in all places.
Just a few different issues that I discovered bizzare whereas dwelling there:
There have been little to no teacher-student relationships, you go to highschool to be taught and that is it.
When toasting others with drinks, you could look the opposite individual lifeless within the eyes whereas clinking glasses collectively.
The truth that at sure occasions of the yr you arrive in school earlier than the solar comes up and also you get dismissed after sundown.
Pedestrian crossings do not imply something, it’s important to await vehicles to cease for you, not the opposite approach spherical.
le-moiseau-rare 14. Battle and peace
Sander Crombach / Unsplash
The tradition is not what you usually see.
In Israel, I used to be shocked by what number of armed younger individuals I noticed.
Actually in all places you go, you see an armed Israel Defence Forces (IDF) soldier. Or going to the seashore and see a lady in a bikini with a weapon over her shoulder.
Additionally shocked at how, regardless of what you learn and listen to within the information, everybody appears to get alongside in on a regular basis life.
You see Jewish and Christian individuals purchasing at Arab Muslim shops and consuming at Arab eating places.
Arab Christians consuming and smoking with Jewish individuals in Tel Aviv.
In Jerusalem, I noticed orthodox Jewish individuals consuming espresso with Muslims, and Arab and Druze safety guards watching over synagogues.
Eye opening expertise.
Anonymous 15. The place are all of the donuts?
Eva Dang / Unsplash
Boston was behind in a number of elements.
I’m American. I lived in London for a semester as a senior in faculty.
Every part was completely different. I’m from Boston and was used to having a drugstore, ATM and Dunkin‘ Donuts inside a 5 minute stroll from most locations.
I lived in Kensington and the closest ATM or drugstore have been 15 minutes away by foot.
By no means discovered donuts, apart from Krispy Kreme donuts at Tesco.
London had higher public transportation and would present when the subsequent practice was coming (Boston didn’t have that expertise but).
Espresso outlets didn’t promote iced espresso.
I interned with Parliament and would get the precise Lord or Member of Parliament on the telephone, whereas after I labored in political places of work in Boston, I needed to communicate with an assitant to the congressperson.
degrassibabetjk 16. “American!”
Lexi Ruskell / Unsplash
Combating over taxi fare.
I used to be strolling down the road alone, at 2:00 a.m., in a small city in Tunisia.
I had been within the nation lower than 24 hours, it was my first time within the Arab world, shortly after the revolution.
I see a crowd of shady wanting males on the nook forward. I determine to maintain strolling in the direction of them, somewhat than cross the road and appear to be I am afraid of them.
I get about 20 toes away, and one among them factors at me and begins shouting, “American! American!”
I am Canadian, however there is not any approach for them to know that. Then one other factors at me and shouts, “American! American!”.
Extra take part, now they’re all pointing at me shouting, “American!”
I used to be nearly to show and run, after I realized they have been taxi drivers combating for the fare, and attempting to inform me they’d take American dollars.
Max_Fenig 17. Shock in Hong Kong
MojoBaron / Flickr
Issues have been completely different there.
I’ve some Hong Kong highlights to share.
Splitting tables with strangers at eating places/meals courts, as a consequence of lack of area. This additionally occurred after I ate at a dim sum restaurant that had a Michelin star.
Consuming at a Cha Chaan Teng (assume low frills diner the place working-class locals eat) and after we went to pay, we have been instructed that they don’t settle for cash. So we paid with payments and satirically acquired cash again in change.
Watching a seemingly homeless-looking lady stroll as much as a jewelry retailer and the doorman immediately welcomes her. He then proceeds to bend over backwards to supply service. She was in all probability a Chinese language mainlander.
bananabomber 18. All of the vehicles have been overwhelming
formulaone / Flickr
Too many vehicles.
Shifting to Atlanta, Georgia from Botswana was an enormous shock (again in 2004, however Botswana has grow to be considerably extra modernized since).
After I was younger, we used to take seven-hour journeys to neighboring international locations to get groceries.
About 99% of the roads I grew up on, have been grime and donkey carts, and that was a sensible approach of getting round.
After I landed within the states for the primary time, I had by no means been anyplace however Africa.
The automobile I used to be in acquired on the I-75 and it merges with the I-85 to a horrific 14-lane nightmare.
I keep in mind laying down on the seat and protecting my head, whereas crying, as a result of I could not deal with all of the headlights and the vehicles and the sheer pace we have been touring at.
I used to be 12 years outdated on the time.
Amykazaam 19. He triggered a scene
Kalle Kortelainen / Unsplash
They did not need the child to get damage.
I’m an American, who has been dwelling in Nepal for a while now.
I work with a inhabitants of youngsters who work on the street, don’t go to highschool, stay in a slum and usually do not need the simplest life.
On my first journey to Nepal, I used to be strolling on the street with a gaggle of those children. A boy, about seven years outdated, was carrying his two-year-old brother round on the streets, begging vacationers for cash.
Whereas strolling again to their home, the newborn began fussing and the boy dropped him.
On the similar time, a motorcycle was flying up the road and almost ran him over, after I scooped him up in my arms.
What was fully surprising was the response from the gang. Folks have been completely surprised and virtually fearful or offended, however not by the silly driving, by me choosing the decrease caste baby up in my arms.
This was the primary time I actually started to know the category and caste disparity in Nepal.
eeyoreishappynow 20. Oh deer
Joe Inexperienced / Unsplash
She wasn’t consuming Rudolph.
I am Swedish, and I went to California to go to a good friend a number of years again, whereas she was an au pair to a few there.
At some point, we have been sitting and speaking with the couple and we talked about meals. The topic of meat got here up and I mentioned that we eat various reindeer meat again residence.
They seemed completely horrified after I mentioned this and began laughing awkwardly and mentioned, “No, no, you do not eat Rudolph! You imply deer meat/venison.”
I simply checked out them and mentioned, “No…I imply reindeer. They’re scrumptious.”
I’ve by no means seen two individuals so horrified by consuming reindeer earlier than. Again residence nobody even bats a watch to it.
DustSiren 21. Very humbling expertise
Artem Beliaikin / Unsplash
An expertise they’re going to always remember.
Me and my pals stayed in a Villa in Bali.
The Villa had laborious working maids, who would begin work at 6:00 a.m., and stayed the entire day doing the gardening, cleansing rooms, sweeping/mopping, you identify it.
One night time, I sat down and chatted with one of many maids (solely 18 years outdated), who defined to me that she would work from 6:00 a.m. till four:00 p.m., then drive an hour to school to check accounting all night time. She would lastly get residence at 2:00 a.m.
This was her every day life. And what’s extra, is that she was being paid the equal of $19 AUD a day, but she was so gracious, content material and glad along with her work.
I instructed her that I’d roughly obtain $20 AUD an hour. This baffled her. She wished she may transfer to Australia, however incomes solely $19 AUD a day simply would not minimize it.
But she was glad, a smile beaming throughout her face.
Now, every time I really feel like not finding out, doing home work or simply something productive, I consider her and her smile.
Djiango12 22. This journey modified their perspective
Wuilmar Matias-Morales / Unsplash
This helped them study different cultures.
Took a visit to northern Guatemala with my church in the direction of the tip of highschool. I’m undecided if it was extra surprising going to Guatemala or returning to my higher center class way of life.
The jungle was so thick, and impulsively, individuals’s homes would pop up in a small clearing. Principally tiny single room buildings of wooden building, with a wood-burning range out entrance and the livestock roaming across the yard.
However these individuals have been so glad and tightly bonded as a household, dwelling collectively in the identical room for his or her total lives.
Coming residence after seeing how desperately poor these individuals have been, actually drove the purpose residence.
These individuals demonstrated that you just don’t essentially want issues to be glad. However the sheer inequality and distinction between my residence and theirs, left me crying within the bathe upon my return.
That journey made me actually consider that we must always proceed to do one thing concerning the disparity in sources and wealth in our world.
FaderFiend 23. Crying in Walmart
Ben Schumin / Flickr
The choices have been overwhelming.
I am American, however grew up in West Africa. We would make journeys each few years again to the U.S., so I used to be acquainted sufficient with the tradition that tradition shock by no means actually occurred.
Till I got here again for faculty. My mother and I have been purchasing at Walmart for stuff for my dorm room.
She arms me a number of coupons and tells me to go decide some razors. So I’m going discover the shaving gear aisle and was simply overwhelmed by the alternatives!
My coupons had percentages off or purchase one get one half off or purchase this shaving cream razor combo for this a lot off.
And it simply overwhelmed me greater than I may have imagined. All I may assume was, “I simply need to shave my legs!”
In Africa, we acquired a selection between two, perhaps three objects, and this unbelievable mass of choices was greater than my mind may deal with. And I began to cry in the midst of Walmart.
datswhatshe 24. Every part was new
Bob Canning / Unsplash
Even winter was new.
My childhood transfer from Indonesia to winter in Pennsylvania, was a goldmine of tradition shock moments.
“Dad! DAD! The home is on fireplace, but it surely’s okay!” (first fire).
“Lengthy shorts” (we did not have a phrase for pants).
“Why did you place your dishes within the oven?” “You mentioned put them within the dishwasher, however I could not determine what that was.”
There have been shrieks of terror (heard a vacuum cleaner).
I apparently acquired so fed up with the quantity of clothes that needed to be worn, and the work it took to place them on, that I refused to put on any footwear with laces till junior excessive.
It additionally took a very long time to recollect how few meals right here you have been allowed to eat together with your arms, and that you just could not get rice at McDonald’s.
theawkwardcomma 25. A bit of too persistent
Jeff Ackley / Unsplash
They appeared too pushy.
Undecided if it counts as a shock, as a lot as a gradual realization.
I have been going to Italy all my life, however as soon as I turned 15 and visited, I began getting requested out by guys who simply would not take ‘no’ for a solution.
You reject a man within the U.Okay. they usually’ll usually take it effectively (except they seem to be a bit unhinged), however in Italy I mentioned no to strangers, pals I might recognized for years, individuals I might met that night time, all individuals who have been in any other case regular.
They’d be so persistent, that I needed to both depart, or use my cousin as a faux boyfriend.
J4viator 26. Half shocked and half anticipated
Tim Johnson / Unsplash
Some issues have been completely different and a few weren’t.
After I visited South Africa, issues have been fairly break up about what I anticipated.
It is acquired trendy Web, respectable infrastructure, superior meals and markets and many others., but additionally has the slums you count on, as effectively and folks dwelling with out working water.
Nevertheless, a number of issues shocked me.
Site visitors lights are ‘robots.’
The writing on municipal electrical grids remains to be largely made from metal. One aspect impact of when it rains laborious is that the electrical energy goes down.
Nearly each middle-class individual has a pool of their yard.
Among the greatest vineyards on the planet, however for some cause it is laborious to get their wine in another country (I not often discover it).
They’ve pace bumps on the freeway.
Qubeye 27. Well mannered bar-goers
Tim Trad / Unsplash
Serving to out the bar tender.
I used to be in Iceland, in a crowded bar, at an Icelandic Reggae present.
However that wasn’t the tradition shock.
At one level, a lady requested me a query in Icelandic. As quickly as she realized I did not know what she was saying, she switched to English.
She requested me to cross her glass to the bar.
Bewildered, I obliged. I took the glass and handed it left.
As if in unison, I watched eight individuals cross the glass to one another, all the way in which right down to the bar, the place it was left for the barkeep to select up.
That might have by no means occurred in Boston.
Nutritionisawesome 28. She was anticipating cake
Kirk Thornton / Unsplash
They acquired a meal as an alternative.
Not precisely a shock, a lot as a shock, however I helped out some neighbors awhile in the past in Mailisita (Tanzania).
Nothing grand, however I suppose I used to be the one individual they knew who spoke English (to resolve the scenario), so that they have been extra grateful than I might anticipated.
They requested if I might deliberate for dinner the subsequent day, and instructed me they’d carry by a cake, as thanks.
Subsequent day comes, their beaming nine-year-old daughter is standing at my door, holding a stay turkey.
I might assumed they’d mentioned, ‘cake’ (I am terrible with accents), however seems that they had certainly mentioned, ‘cock,’ as in male poultry.
In order that was the day I realized learn how to butcher and put together a turkey.
We had fun.