Its great that our company offers us culture trainings for certain international destinations. There are so many different cultures and customs; It’s great to get yourself accustomed to them before you travel. Sometimes, though, some of the perceived customs are actually not really their customs…
Walking into a chinese restaurant to have lunch or dinner, what do you normally get after dinner? A Fortune Cookie! Fortune Cookies are well known in the states here as a Chinese delicacy. So persumably, one would assume that Fortune Cookies originated in China and were something that the Chinese were all too familiar with.
My friend was on a flight from Detroit to Shanghai, and was sitting next to an elderly Chinese woman. The first meal had been served. My friend had finished her meal and was getting into the movie that was playing onboard. The eldering lady poked my friend’s arm and asked, “Excuse me, what is this?” My friend looked to see what she was pointing at and saw the fortune cookie. She was a little confused but said, “It’s your fortune cookie.” Lady then said, “Oh ok, it’s a cookie.” My friend proceeds to turn back to her movie.
A few moments later, the flight attendant walked by. The elderly lady stops her and saids, “Excuse me, can I have another cookie? This one has a paper in it.” o_o
The flight attendant and my friend had to spend a little bit of time trying to explain to her what a fortune cookie was. The elderly lady was trying to eat the cookie and had gotten weirded out when she bit into the paper! Apparently she had never seen a fortune cookie before and told them that there are no such thing in China. So fortune cookies are actually an American originated trend? We all had no idea!!! 😀