Speak of Chinese people, one specific word usually occurs in my mind—friendly. For the past 21 years, that is the most common and usual word used in books to describe Chinese people. Then when coming to the reality, is it really so in every case? The following is the true feeling of a foreigner.
I like to talk to people, and my friends said I am a good talker and I am a friendly guy. In China I have the same great experiences with local people. When I encounter some difficulties in communication I would ask my Chinese wife for help. She is a kind of woman who is always open, friendly, open minded, always with good mood and willing to give a hand to anyone. To make my story short I would tell you my experiences in China in recent years. For example:
– When I attended a meeting with Chinese business men, they are all well-dressed and respectful. Then, for work matters, I took my wife with me the second time, they did not pay too much attention to her and sometimes just even ignore her presence. – In some occasions my wife would call some foreign embassies for visa information and the Chinese people who works in that visa department were ill-mannered and behavior rudely. Then when I made the phone call to complain about it and they simply denied it and felt ashamed just like nothing had happened.
Sometimes when I travel to Europe or Latin America my friends greeted me and the first question they ask is “how is your wife?”, also my family asked about her, it’s the main question my relatives and friends drops. -When I am in China and I meet my local friends, almost nobody ask for my wife, the main question is “how is the business?” It´s not fair this kind of behaviors for the different attitude in the same country towards different people. I’m just confused about it.
Ok, now the above is the whole story about the foreign friend. What’s your felling after reading? In fact, even as a Chinese, I have no idea of whether Chinese people is really friendly or not to anyone. The reasons of such “unfair behavior” are very complicated, but the fundamental reason is the different culture. Just as an other people says, you can never compare Chinese culture to any other culture in the planet.