It has been 2 weeks that we have been learning about culture bumps. In fact, they exist everywhere and at anytime. Our team is called The Elite Team, coming from China. It’s the first time for all of us to come to America. We were so excited before we actually got on American ground. But when we saw that here there is a light lunch and a heavy supper and we need to keep a bubble
of space with other guys, AND there is no place for us to find hot water, we were confused. Is this really the America we dreamed about for such a long time? What should we do to adjust to these culture bumps?
So we chose a subject, the hot water. This is so significant for Chinese people who are told by doctors and elders that hot water is good for our health—we especially need to drink one glass of hot water in the morning.
In this video, we compared two guys. One was eagerly looking for hot water, but he had to wait until he arrived the apartment; the other guy filled his glass with cold water and drank it although the temperature was 13 degree centigrade or so. From this video, we can see that the American guy felt satisfied; in contrast the Chinese disappointed face says it all. A real culture bump!
Why do Americans drink such cold water in winter? Won’t they feel uncomfortable? Do they eat too much meat at home, so that they need cold water to balance their calories in the bodies? We aim to figure out the reasons.
Feeling puzzled, our team visited an American in an office where she gave us an interesting answer. Elizabeth is a pretty young lady; she looks so graceful that we could hardly imagine her drinking cold water with ice cubes. In Chinese culture, a beautiful lady should sip hot tea gracefully. But Elizabeth told us seriously that she prefers cold water because she is very busy and drinking cold water doesn’t take too much time. And her children only have room temperature water as well. She never forces them to drink hot water. She added drinking more water is healthy for the young child and usually children have no patience to drink hot water. In our culture, if conditions permit, we will choose hot water in the winter first.
In fact, both hot water and cold water have the same meaning in the two cultures. They are concerned with health and effectiveness. Each culture has its own way. Just like people in Beijing would choose the subway as being more convenient and more effective, people in Houston choose driving the private car for the same reason. They have the same meaning. So there may be no sense to argue which is healthier- hot water and cold water .What you think is, just a culture bump.