I am currently experiencing acculturation firsthand as an immigrant here in the US.
Here are three differences (which I am in the process of acculturating), I experience almost daily:
- I know English, I can read and speak english but it simply is not enough because maybe what I know is English in ‘NEPALI’ Style 😛 (if that even makes sense to you). It takes time to understand the tone, accent and the style of speaking AMERICAN English.
- In Nepal, we have a culture of respecting people in a different way. A complete stranger can be referred to as a ‘Dai/Bhai’ (brother), ‘Didi/Baini’ (sister), uncle, aunty, ‘Baa’ (grandfather), and ‘Maa’ (grandmother). And the important thing is it is so engraved in our culture, that addressing in this respect comes almost naturally to all Nepalese. We just cannot do that here. In the United States, respect is manifested in a different form. One which I particularly noticed is that amount of word ‘Sorry’ used by people to strangers or asking ‘Hi, how are you?’. Everyone has the courtesy to greet everyone.
- Food habits are completely different. I don’t know why people here ‘NORMALLY’ drink really cold water or ice water. Even if you specifically ask for a ‘Room Temperature’ water, it will still be ‘COLD’ water. Even though it is winter and chilly, people still drink ice cold water (my husband too). People here have a big craze for coke/coffee, like people in Nepal have for ‘Taato Chiyaa’ (Hot cup of Tea).
I think I will be able to add more to the list as time goes by. Until then :)…