Military Spouse Magazine

FEB 2019

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Page 27 of 35

G O O D A D V I C E REGARDLESS OF WHICH STAMP YOU WILL BE ADDING NEXT TO YOUR PASSPORT, GETTING ACQUAINTED WITH THE LIFESTYLE, CULTURE, AND ETIQUETTE OF THE FOREIGN LAND YOU WILL CALL HOME FOR THE NEXT FEW YEARS IS ESSENTIAL. It will help you not only feel ready to tackle the new adventure, but it will also prevent you from committing embarrassing faux pas, such as blowing your nose at the table while dining in South Korea. Here's what you need to know about the three most common overseas destinations where military families get stationed: Do This Not That What you need to know before you move overseas. By Brunella Costagliola, Air Force Spouse 1 GERMANY Willkommen! While American and German cultures can be perceived as rather similar, there are a few things that Germans take very seriously. One of them is punctuality. If you are invited over for dinner by a German col- league or friend, for example, be sure to be there on time. This shows your host that you take them seriously and are able to keep up with an organized schedule, which is also of the utmost importance in their culture. While German people are friendly, they are also pros at keep- ing their professional and private life separate, rarely mixing the two, so don't be discour- aged or hurt if your new colleague declines an invitation to your child's birthday party. Etiquette tips: be on time; be organized; keep your private and professional lives separate. 2 ITALY. CIAO BELL A! Don't be surprised if these turn out to be your baby's first words. Italian people are known for being friendly, and they will show you by their word choice, their greeting rituals—Italians kiss each other on the cheeks, starting with the left one—and their willingness to share meals. While Italians are rather laid back, it doesn't mean they don't have their set of etiquette rules they expect foreigners to follow. First of all, don't decline an invitation to join in their banquet or turn down the offer to have your empty wine glass topped up, yet again. Italy is also known for its breathtaking and famous architecture, especially churches. So, don't for- get to wear conservative clothes when visiting a church, as more than likely the priest will not allow you to step inside if he thinks you are showing too much skin. Etiquette tips: dress appropriately; don't decline an invitation to share a meal; be more laid back. 2 ITALY. CIAO BELL A! Photo by Roman Kraft Photo by Anastasia Dulgier Photo by Stephen Weida Photo by Damiano Baschiera Photo by Caleb Strokes Photo by Cristina Gottardi 28 MILITARYSPOUSE.COM / FEBRUARY 2019

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