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The Kiwi way

 New Zealanders are very sympathetic people, because in reality they have always depended on each other due to the isolation of New Zealand to the rest of the world. To understand it better lets take a look at this real life story… “A plumber was asked to come and fix a water pump in a chalet up on a mountain in the north island. He got there and realized that he would need an electrician to take out a panel. He waited one hour for the electrician to arrive, and the panel was taken apart. For more that the plumber tried, he still could not get enough pressure from the pump. He called a water pump salesman, who put him in contact with the production engineer…anyway to cut the story short it took more than 4 hours to fix the pump, and more than 6 professionals from different areas, voluntarily giving their time,  to help a person in need by phone or in loco. Their solidarity is 10 out of 10.

Manners: Although the Kiwi can be very informal, they always use good manners when dealing with any person. It is custom to always use please when asking for something, and also to thank after. Sorry or Pardon me is also very used. Not using these little magic words can see you labeled as rude, ignorant, arrogant etc.. The Kiwis are extremely critical in this sense.If you do not use good manner, you will not be treated with good manners, simple as that.

Real Story : In a restaurant a customer call out a waitress with a sound, and asked for a coke. The waitress served the people on the table beside, but did not bring the coke. He asked again for the coke and was again ignored. He threatened to talk to the manager, and was again ignored. That’s when he got up to complain. The manager called the waitress out, who then went over to the table where the group of guys were sitting and said: the manager asked me to tell you that until you say “excuse me, may I have a coke please” and also say “sorry” for the way you spoke to me earlier you will no be served.

Sense of Humor: The Kiwis do have it, but it might take a little while to understand it and get used to it. That is because many of the jokes and things that make them laugh is directly related to their culture and to their country. Jokes of bad taste are that popular, and the more popular jokes are about them selves or their favourite person to make fun of, the Australian. For example “how does an Australian have a bubble bath? They sit in a puddle of mud and fart”. In many ways the Kiwi humor is very similar to the British humor. The humor is subtle natural. It is courteous to smile even when you don’t get a joke.

Friendliness : You can be sure that when you walk down the street most people will say hello, or hello how are you?, or at least they will give you a friendly nod. In the bigger cities this doesn’t happen that much. But you can be sure in smaller towns most will try to talk with you. The classic ice breaker is to talk about the weather for example “nice day today isn’t it?”.  If you not from the town they will probably then ask “where are you from?”. Initially you may find the Kiwi is a little closed and reserved, especially with foreigners but once they feel comfortable with you they start opening up a little more. This way of being dates back to when everything and everyone could be seen a threat or danger. Today it is not so extreme of course. To form tight friendships with Kiwis might sometimes take a little time, but once you have formed a good friendship, they can really make great friends. 

  Way of acting and speaking:  In the eyes of the Kiwi, everyone is seen as equal, and no person is more important than another. They have a very interesting way of complimenting each other for something that you have done - “not too bad”. No one is really going to say that you did a very good or excellent job, they will tell you that it is not too bad. But don’t feel bad if someone says this. Not too bad really means very good. On the other hand if something is good with you such as “Im coming to your house around 6 pm, is that alright?” the likely answer would be “good as gold”. Another thing is for the Kiwi there is really nothing that they think they cant do. For example if you ask “do you know how to play the guitar” it is likely that they will say “no, but I give it a go.” How ya doing or good day are common ways of greeting. Normaly when meeting someone you shake their hands and say you name. Women don’t normally extend their hand before the men, and a kiss on the cheek its only given when there is a little more intimacy.
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