Sunday, May 14, 2006

say what ?

Since Bermuda is still a British territory, there's a sense of wanting to preserve some of the old English etiquette. They actually mention this in their tourist brochures. But if you reside here, a greeting of 'Good Morning, Afternoon or Evening and How are you doing?' is not only appreciated but can make difference between really good service, bad service or no service at all. Hard to believe but yes it's true. I’ve heard of some crazy personal accounts about the lack of and sometimes refusal of customer service that would have you appalled. If such a thing were to happen in Canada, it would cost the employee their job, but not here and that's a topic for another day.

We adapted pretty quickly to the Bermudian way of life in such a short time, as anyone would. Everyday we greet and are greeted by Bermudians on the street with the standard goodness. Ex-pats greet each other with a smile and a nod. I mean can you really picture wishing someone your own age Good morning. They will look at you funny.

We went to Toronto in December for the start of our one month vacation (which also included Dubai and India). Walking the streets of Toronto running errands, I could not help but smile and nod at most that I made eye contact with. Until it dawned on me that Hey, no one's smiling back (well, some did but with surprised looks on their faces). Then came the next realization that I was back in Toronto and people just don't do that over there. Never mind that it was winter and snowing and that didn't tip me off right away that I was in a different place. Hmm, I wonder what they were thinking as they were passing me I know her?

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