Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Differences

I learn something new everyday, particularly the Australians culture. Not something big though but kinda noticeable (for me).

Birthday Party

Indonesian way, the birthday person usually treats her/his closest friends and all expenses will be paid by the birthday person. And the best part is the birthday person will get present/s from her/his friends.

Aussie way, the bill will be divided to the number of people there but exclude the birthday person so everybody will pay the same amount. The birthday person won't have to pay for all expenses, instead friends will pay for the birthday person, uhm... it's cool isn't it?
But the birthday person won't get any present either.

If I have to choose I will choose to get birthday present though, cos it's always excite me to open presents and see what's inside the box. Considering my friends had so much effort to find the (right) present for me.

Farawell Party

Indonesian way, again the one who's leaving usually pay for the expenses, and invite people to come. Or if s/he is from top level management the office will pay for the expenses ;)

Aussie way, someone else will throw farewell party for one who's leaving. Experienced it on last Friday when one of Sam's colleague is going back home shortly, the other colleague held the farewell party. Other farewell party will be this Thursday night and it's strictly for boys only cos they want to play pool, drink beer and etc.

I don't know whether the Americans or British or Scottish or Dutch has other way to celebrate those two occasions, please do share if you know something about it.


Anonymous said...

That is indeed how they do it in Australia. I never had to pay on my birthday and also I paid for the birthday friend's dinner when I was in South Australia.

I have no idea how Americans do it. I never ask my husband. :( I just assumed he would do what I do. LOL


Anonymous said...

I can tell you about the Dutch way.

But I'm afraid the good old Dutch habits gradually are fading away. You know, globalization and that jazz.

Yet birthdays used to be celebrated at home. The lucky one(or unlucky one, depending on your age -up to ten it's great, after seventy it's boring), provides drinks, snacks, music and whatever he/she can think of to entertain the guests.

The family members decorate the room and give him/her roomservice at breakfeast time and do the waiters' job when the guests arrive/have arrived in the evening.

Your are supposed to attend to someones birthday party if
- you are a relative
- you are a friend or
- you are an acquaintance of a sort.

The guests bring a or a few presents. From my own experience I can say they seldom surpass the dullness of
- bottles of wine or liquor
- books and
- flowers ( in case it's a lady who has a birthday.)

As for farewell parties: it's almost like the one you described.

( By the way: thirty years ago I officially stopped growing older. No birthdays for me anymore.)

Anonymous said...

Farewell (and welcome)parties, from what I've learnt, has always been thrown by those who are left behind and/or visited, and they also give the ( weigh wise thoughtful) present not to overburden the luggage.

Regardless the nationalities.

As for birthday parties, they really vary, some Indonesians do throw birthday parties for their friend(s) and still giving present. Isn't it the essence of having birthday ? To receive presents, that is.

Momisodes said...

Americans do it similar to the Aussie way. The birthday person or person leaving, never usually pays or hosts the party....Sometimes I prefer it that way since I'm terrible at planning..

Anonymous said...

Hi Ecky,

My recollections of Aussie birthday parties are
1. If at home the person having the party or their family will host the event, supplying drinks,food and entertainment and people attending will usually bring a gift depending on their relationship.

2. If the party ia at a restaurant or other similiar venue then invited guests will usually cover the cost of the birthday person. Gifts are also supplied depending on the relationship and circumstances. It can be a bit hard to party on after dinner if you are loaded down with 5 tonnes of presents.
Generally the idea is the treat the birthday person as someone special for that day, therefore people will buy them drinks and food even paid for their entry into clubs etc, just so they feel like royality.

As a side mote, at weddings the families of the couple or the couple themselves will paid for the costs of all the guest, food drinks and entertainment. Usually the brides family food,venue and entertainment and the grooms family the drinks, bearing in mind we Aussies can drink a fair bit!!! hehehe

Hope this helps


Anonymous said...

It's the same here. The birthday boy/girl usually doesn't pick up the bill, it's covered by the friends. Gifts are optional, usually only family members and closed ones give some pressie.

But look at other expats in Indonesia. GG threw his birthday party in EP and he's the one who picked up the tab. Stuart did the same thing for his birthday and farewell BBQs.

So I guess it depends.