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What did my experience when I first went abroad or visited a different culture than my own How did I overcome the cultural differences - Essay Example

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As you can imagine, I was quite nervous. I was going to fly to Vienna to participate in a conference for students. I didn’t know anyone there and I also…
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What did my experience when I first went abroad or visited a different culture than my own How did I overcome the cultural differences
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CULTURAL EXPERIENCE I grew up in Russia and was eighteen years old before I had a chance to leave my home country and visit a different country. As you can imagine, I was quite nervous. I was going to fly to Vienna to participate in a conference for students. I didn’t know anyone there and I also did not speak German. I remember staring at my plane ticket for hours before I was scheduled to leave. I wondered what the people in Austria were like and how they would be different from the people in Russia. To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect. The trip was happening in March so I had packed a lot of winter clothing, expecting the temperature in Vienna to be the same as in Moscow.
The plane trip was uneventful. When I arrived at the Vienna airport however I began to have a bit of culture shock. Everything was written in German—not in Russian! I heard lots of people around me speaking a language I didn’t understand. I went to a shop to buy some food and I could see all the magazines were different and there were many different types of food available that weren’t available in Russia. When I walked out of the airport I was surprised to see that the temperature was much warmer than it was in Russia. I wouldn’t be needing all the winter gear I had brought with me from Russia. I got in a taxi and explained that I wanted to go to a hotel in the downtown part of Vienna. It took quite awhile for the driver to understand what I wanted: communication with people was difficult. As we drove down the streets I noticed that there were many different models of cars on the streets. Many people had more expensive cars than they did in Russia, for example.
As I got to know Vienna over the next few days I realized it was a city of wonderful architecture and very friendly people. I was amazed at how clean the streets were and how green the parks were. A big difference was the quality of life of pensioners. In Russia many are very poor, but in Austria I could see they were well taken care of. Generally, people seemed to be happy and kind. I began to realize that I had been nervous about nothing.
How did I deal with all of this? In the end I found my trip to be very enjoyable. In the beginning I had been nervous and unsure, but I made sure to keep an open mind. I was curious about Austria and I wanted to learn more. I didn’t necessarily think my own country was better—I wanted to learn. By keeping an open mind while traveling it is easier to adapt to a foreign culture. Read More
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