Culture shock in reverse

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Culture shock in reverse

Postby ErzsebetGilbert » Thu 24 Dec 2009 9:24 pm

Maybe this is a silly thread to start, but I'm curious as to whether anybody else has had a similar experience to mine. I was born in Colorado, but my husband and I relocated permanently to Hungary a few years ago. As I've mentioned in other posts, I'm learning the tricks and turns and beauties of Magyarul. But my family still lives in the States, so we are visiting - and every time we visit, I find myself experiencing a small bit of linguistic culture shock. I get astonished by being suddenly surrounded by English conversations, signage, radio and TV... it's so strange to me! I compulsively listen in on stranger's conversations simply because I can understand them through and through! Anybody else ever experience something like myself?
for original fictions, travelogues, photographs, prattlings and perambulations, I'm at:
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby sil_lark » Sat 26 Dec 2009 4:15 am

Completely understand. My family lived in Asia for four years when I was going through my early adolescent years (10-14). I got accustomed to the language and cultural idiosyncracies, and when I would visit the States I'd be so amazed at how many cars America had on the roads, and at how many food selections there were in grocery stores. :lol:
一 鸣 惊 人.

Native Language: American English

Second language: 4 years Mandarin Chinese

I've tried: Old English, Hebrew, Biblical Greek, Gothic

I want to learn: Tagolog, Arabic, Biblical Greek, Russian, Vietnamese
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby formiko » Sat 26 Dec 2009 4:42 am

I spent 3 months a year from age 5 until age 15 aty my grandma's house at the Cherokee reservation in North Carolina. She had her small circle of friends who primarily spoke Cherokee all day while they were playing ashvtli "bridge". Every time I came back to "civilization", it was hard to get back into non-Native mode. :) No one said "Shiyo" when you went to the store in the morning or "skee" when you paid them or "donadágohv" when you left :(
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby Sobekhotep » Sat 26 Dec 2009 6:22 am

I didn't experience much reverse culture shock upon returning from several months in South Korea. The main things that I had to readjust to were the time zone (I liked being 14 hours ahead) & the electrical outlets. :)
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby ErzsebetGilbert » Sat 26 Dec 2009 3:44 pm

sil_lark wrote:Completely understand. My family lived in Asia for four years when I was going through my early adolescent years (10-14). I got accustomed to the language and cultural idiosyncracies, and when I would visit the States I'd be so amazed at how many cars America had on the roads, and at how many food selections there were in grocery stores. :lol:



Glad to know somebody sympathizes! I know exactly what you mean about the excess of cars and food selections, etc.. As a teen you must have been overwhelmed. And the blaring TV... you can make a reality show out of anything, I guess! What's been funny this first week is my inability to remember that when everybody speaks native English like me, every single person can actually understand my long strings of curses in public. :o
for original fictions, travelogues, photographs, prattlings and perambulations, I'm at:
http://erzsebetgilbert.blogspot.com/
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby ErzsebetGilbert » Sat 26 Dec 2009 3:49 pm

formiko wrote:I spent 3 months a year from age 5 until age 15 aty my grandma's house at the Cherokee reservation in North Carolina. She had her small circle of friends who primarily spoke Cherokee all day while they were playing ashvtli "bridge". Every time I came back to "civilization", it was hard to get back into non-Native mode. :) No one said "Shiyo" when you went to the store in the morning or "skee" when you paid them or "donadágohv" when you left :(



That must have been such a shocking contrast for you... I've been saying "koszonem" instead of "thank you" when I leave restaurants! "Civilization" - what a joke! I miss hearing the clerks tell me "to your health, and I kiss your hand, my sweet" (egeszsegedre, es csokolok, edeskem)... sometimes there is just a lost loveliness in the language...
for original fictions, travelogues, photographs, prattlings and perambulations, I'm at:
http://erzsebetgilbert.blogspot.com/
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby ErzsebetGilbert » Sat 26 Dec 2009 3:52 pm

Sobekhotep wrote:I didn't experience much reverse culture shock upon returning from several months in South Korea. The main things that I had to readjust to were the time zone (I liked being 14 hours ahead) & the electrical outlets. :)


Aaaaahhh! Time zones... I was going to bed at 5 and waking at 2 for the first few days! Now I just can't get over the fact that we're buried in a foot of snow, which doesn't seem fair!
for original fictions, travelogues, photographs, prattlings and perambulations, I'm at:
http://erzsebetgilbert.blogspot.com/
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby sil_lark » Mon 28 Dec 2009 12:11 am

Other Asian customs that I adopted had to do with shoes and eating utensils. When me and my family went to a small but crowded town on vacation we ate at a restaurant. There were only forks, no chopsticks, but when I was finished, without thinking I placed my fork on my plate in the same fashion I would have placed my Chinese, glass spoon on a bowl.

It also took a while getting used to people wearing their shoes inside and me walking on carpet. :lol:
一 鸣 惊 人.

Native Language: American English

Second language: 4 years Mandarin Chinese

I've tried: Old English, Hebrew, Biblical Greek, Gothic

I want to learn: Tagolog, Arabic, Biblical Greek, Russian, Vietnamese
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Re: Culture shock in reverse

Postby Sobekhotep » Mon 28 Dec 2009 6:42 am

sil_lark wrote:It also took a while getting used to people wearing their shoes inside and me walking on carpet. :lol:

Yeah, me, too! :D
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