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Friday, August 13, 2004

Should I accept this as their culture? 

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"Dear Ai, my homestay family is very nice, but they give me pasta everyday. In my culture, I eat rice everyday. I paid a homestay fee that includes 3 meals, so I don't want to use my money for food. I respect them for their culture, but I would like to eat different kinds of food. Is it rude to tell them that or should I accept this as their culture?" -Lin in Vancouver.

"Hi Lin! It is not rude to tell them at all. Your homestay family probably doesn't know what you would like to eat -- and they won't know unless you tell them. You are not a guest in your homestay family. YOu paid the homestay fee, so negotiage (make arrangements through discussion) with them. In Western culture, you don't have to assume, you can say what you think."

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