Olá! That means hello in Portuguese.
You wonder why I am going Portuguese today? As what I’ve promised to you last week we’re gonna go intercultural communication. Too much with political concerns, too much with moral degeneration issues, let us relax our brains and feel extra-diversified as we explore various cultures all over the world. Now, fasten your seatbelts as I am going to take you to Brazil.
Brazil with its capital Brasilia is located in the Eastern part of South America bordering the Atlantic Ocean. It has a population of almost two hundred million with an area of about eight million five hundred thousand square kilometers. That’s roughly twenty eight times as big as the Philippines. And olá, Brazil is a Portuguese-speaking country. Now doubt Portuguese is one the top ten most popular languages in the world according to the census.
Anyway, Brazilian Culture is a bit like the Philippines.
To start of, like us, Brazilians are very emotional and much attached with their families and friends. Before they make conversations, it is necessary for them to give a kiss on their cheeks (we call it beso-beso) or a handshake. Asking about the family’s background and how the family is going on is very important likewise. In that way, you show your deep concern for them.
They are also very into coffee, and that they serve really strong coffee. These coffees are now served mostly during business transactions. When it comes to business dealings on the other hand, Brazilians are very particular with time so that when you make appointments with them, make it at least two weeks in advance. Never try to make impromptu calls at business or government offices. During meetings, Brazilians start on time (a very reflecting part for the Filipinos). Gift giving in doing business meetings is also usual in Brazil so that the host will have to give a present to her colleagues or if not he must buy lunch or dinner instead during or after the transaction.
An interesting fact about its people is that they have this unique gesture that they do every time they express appreciation to someone; that is, Brazilians pinch their earlobes in front of the person they admire using their thumbs and forefingers.
Another thing, to invoke good luck, make a “fig”; that is, place your thumb between your index and middle fingers while making a fist.
If somebody asks you a question and you do not know what the answer is, just flick your fingertips underneath your chin. It indicates that you do not know the answer to the question. Imagine it and try doing it. Its fun and amazing realizing that we only see this in cartoons shows.
With the mentioned information above, what can we say about these people? How do they differ from us? Do we have “strange” qualities too that are exceptional in our culture? What are these? Or do we, like most of us, forget our customs and traditions our ancestors passed on to us?