Monday, May 4, 2015

strange americans in denmark

i took a train down to a town south of us, to a hospital i've been to at least four times before today, got a good report, and took the train back home-- stopping in town on the way to pick up a couple gifts.  one for william's good friend whose birthday we will miss by one day.  a few more for his teachers and the pedagogue helper in his class.  then i heard that it is not normal here to give teachers gifts at the end of the school year (which for william, is coming up in just a few days).  i debated whether to take them back or not, but figure we'll just go ahead and give them, and they can chalk it up to us being the strange americans.  i'm sure we've gotten out of a few awkward situations that same way in the past (probably in america as well).

and i met a friend, who was also doing some errands in town, at a coffee shop.  she's on maternity leave right now.  and though she didn't grow up in denmark (she came here around the same time we did), she's adopted the practice of leaving the pram, with her sleeping baby, outside the cafe while she goes inside, as is the norm here.

i must admit, when she went up to the counter to order, and i realized i did not have my eye on the pram i had a culturally-instinctive-(strange american in denmark)-thought: "oh! i should probably be watching it!"  so i did.  and took a picture for good measure.  and watched some more, as people walked past it not giving it a second look.

and when my friend hears her daughter start to squirm on the baby monitor, she goes out and brings her inside...

where she, who is used to hearing chinese and danish from her parents, has to listen to that strange american cooing at her in some funny language.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yeah massive cultural differences at play here..

Personally i think the mother in above link ,should have known better, allways follow local rules/laws !
Made big headlines in danish newspapers though... .those crazy americans..;)

I think your kids teachers will appreciate your gifts and the thoughts behind it.