What was your biggest experience of “culture shock” in another country?

April 17, 2017 3:35pm CST
I remember a few years back a friend telling me that she was invited to this dinner. She had recently moved to New Zealand to live from Holland. It said, it was a bring a plate dinner. She went along and took an empty plate. Then someone explained to her it was a figure of speech. She was meant to bring something cooked to contribute to the group dinner. In NZ it is known as a 'potluck dinner' or 'bring a plate'.
3 people like this
7 responses
@Nawsheen (22958)
• Mauritius
17 Apr 17
Oh no what did your friend do then
1 person likes this
17 Apr 17
She still got some food but felt very embarrassed as she is quite a proud person. I had this girl from Latvia staying with us. She said she would have also brought an empty plate. I told her her the story so she was prepared.
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@Nawsheen (22958)
• Mauritius
18 Apr 17
@ncwdianne even i would have been embarassed i think. It's good that you managed to advise the other girl. Else she would have felt so embarassed too maybe
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@MALUSE (43484)
• Uzbekistan
17 Apr 17
I'd like to know which country your friend is from and where the incident took place in order to understand the post better.
1 person likes this
17 Apr 17
My friend was from Holland and had just emigrated to New Zealand in the 1960's
@MALUSE (43484)
• Uzbekistan
18 Apr 17
@ncwdianne You should include this in the post. Other members may want to know, too.
@boiboing (12881)
• Northampton, England
17 Apr 17
I would not have known what that meant but I would have asked.
17 Apr 17
The kiwi term is 'Bring a plate' or also known as 'Potluck Dinner'. It is normally done to spread the cost and responsibility of getting together for a meal with a large group. Every time I have a birthday for one of my kids I prefer to prepare the food. My mother in law wants to bring something towards the lunch, she harasses me until I give her something to bring (in some ways its kind of sweet that she wants to contribute). She was a large family and money was not as available as it is in a smaller family. I grew up in a well-off family and was possibly spoilt too much. I am careful not to do this to my kids. My hubby is a good reminder whenever I am spoiling them too much.
@Shavkat (65270)
• Philippines
18 Apr 17
That's embarrassing. What's the next story?
@cupkitties (7458)
• United States
18 Apr 17
In the US I think it's kind of assumed everybody knows to bring something. Especially if it's a church dinner or what we call a covered dish supper. If somebody told me "Bring a plate", I would think it's a joke.
@Kandae11 (40370)
17 Apr 17
She said a plate dinner - not a dinner plate.
@Hate2Iron (8022)
• Canada
17 Apr 17
LOL... I'm not sure that I would have understood what was expected either.