Sunday, October 31, 2010

Taking off my shoes in the house

Like most Australians I have always worn my footwear in the house.

As a young boy the only time there was an issue with footwear in the house was when there was mud on my shoes.

When I initially met my future wife, as a matter of courtesy and respect I would always take my shoes off before entering her unit.

I did this as a show of respect for her property, her unit, her home. It did not occur to me at the time that if I was to marry this woman at some point, that I would be forgoing my home life sensibilities for hers.

But so it was.

No compromise, no meeting in the middle, no delicate mix between of east and west.

Basically I live my home life as if I was raised in a Chinese family.

This expectation laso extends to the TV set. In fact watching TV for anything other than the new is  big no-no. The house is almost always quiet, with some activity going on that requires silence, or so I am told.

Anytime I watch sport on TV, I am quickly reminded that I am being lazy. No ifs or buts.

What is not appreciated by my wife is that many Australians keep the TV on at all times, simply as background noise that will take our attention from time to time, but we still get all our work done.

Completely different approach to home life, and one that I simply didn’t expect when I entered into a cross-cultural relationship.


Gary Alexander said...

If it makes you feel any better.. up here in Canada.. Removing shoes at the door is an absolute must no matter what the season is.

Not being able to watch sports on TV??.. Not in a million years would that be possible on this side of the world. Canadian-Chinese people included.. Good luck with that!

Gary Alexander said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
piompino said...

Really kind of sad that there is no merging of cultures in YOUR home. If your wife just wanted to stick to her own heritage, then she should have married a Chinese man, and he would have ruled the household with very little say from her. Does she realize that she is robbing you of your Australian background. I take it that you don't have any children. When the time comes, seems like your wife is planning on only giving birth to Chinese babies...good luck with that.

Anonymous said...

Not watching TV, especially if you have a young child in the house, is a good idea. It *is* a time-waster - just non-productive entertainment. It has a corrosive effect on young children's minds.

With my wife, I actually like the custom of taking one's shoes off in the house. The only drawback is that strangers can tell how many people are at home by the number of shoes on the front porch.


Anonymous said...

@Anonymous : watching TV is a non-productive activity, and so what ? As long as it is part of your leisure, which expects you to be inactive, there's nothing wrong with that. I think this man, being a doctor whose occupation is quite productive and useful to the society, can afford with spending some time doing nothing else than staying on a couch looking to a screen, an activity which by the way allows to reduce pressure and being more productive at work, like having a nap after lunch is told to be in some cultures.

karma said...

I have a sister-in-law who is extremely anal when it comes to the cleanliness of her house and expects everyone to take off their shoes, however when she comes over our house (owned by her older sister) she doesn't take off her shoes because the older sister doesn't expect it, still I reckon she should still do it, to avoid the hyprocrite label she has written all over her forehead, we do have to clean our tiles too, albeit not as regularly as she does. She is chinese and regularly yells at her husband for the littlest of things, oh and she owns his bank account, because she is unemployed after she claimed compo and can no longer work.

I have a deep hatred for her after she said to my wife that her new car is worth more than my 6 month daughter's life. This statement arised after I personally installed my baby seat in her car, and later she adjusted it without informing me, putting my daughter's life at risk, she told my wife that I ruined her car seat because I secured the belt too tightly and it has left an imprint, what a load of BS. In response I told her to never call me over to fix her 5 computers in her house, I have done it in the past out of my own good will and never expected anything in return, but after she and her older sister defrauded me out of 120K for an investment that was worthless (only returned $500 per month if I was lucky - they blame it on the market, I replied back, well before I entered the investment you said I could earn $6000 per month, now you claim the market has dropped in value?) I came to the realisation that these mongrels befriended me to take my money, and even after they've taken everything, they still wanted more.

What do you like/dislike most about Chinese women?