13 May

Culture Shock in Singapore and New Zealand

Culture Shock in Singapore and Culture Shock in New Zealand are a wonderful pair of websites by a Japanese person who visited those countries. The sites describe such things as the characteristics of the Singlish dialect, a Durian Tour, good and bad regional foods, and the culture shock of returning to Japan. Each site is illustrated with cartoons, very much in a Japanese style, of a cat or a dog enjoying aspects of the foreign culture.

Some examples of the commentary:

“Sarsi is a carbonated beverage produced by F&N. Sarsi looks like Coca-Cola but tastes and smells strange. Some say Sarsi smells like an ointment which we use after mosquito bite. Others say Sarsi smells like a poultice for stiff back. Anyway, these are not the expressions for something delicious.”

“You may see the sign on the wall or the doors in shower rooms saying ‘Five-minutes is enough!’ Dear, it’s too short for Japanese who love to warm ourselves up during long hot shower, or preferably long soaking in hot bath-tub.”

“‘Spaghetti’ means ‘canned spaghetti’, which is soaked in tomato sauce and extremely soft.
For KIWI, ‘al dente’ means ‘not cooked’.”

I can confirm that Sarsi is not even close to delicious, despite its Pepsi-like packaging. Anyway, these sites are an enjoyable read.

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