Can "Hospitality" be 24/7 here?

January 23, 2011

In the culture where I grew up, hospitality plays a big part of it. Family ties are very strong, whoever needs assistance, support or company, you'll have it anytime, anywhere. So, it makes hospitality available for 24 hours, 7 days (everyday). When I moved here, I learned that you can't just barge in someone's house even they are your relatives without prior notice. Unlike in the Philippines, you can pay a suprise visit to your relatives or friends. What's the reason for not allowing that in this culture? I don't have the exact answer for that but I thought maybe it's because the preparation for visiting relatives or friends can be tiring. They are worried about if the place/room would be enough for them, especially if there are expecting more guests. If the house is clean, what to feed them, what are the entertaining stuff they needed and many other worries. But this is not applicable to all at all times, people like to visit because they just want to have a small talk, relax and to be on a different atmosphere. If they want to eat and do some stuff that would entertain them, they rather stay home or check-in a hotel, but that's not reason behind the intent to visit. Maybe they want to catch up and be updated on each other life. Another reason might also be due to privacy, some are reluctant to open up their house and let others do freely whatever they want. For some, they are trying hard to be someone they are not, like a good cook, an organized person, a good interior designer, etc. So, suprise visit is not welcome to them, there is always a need for preparation before the coming of the guests. Well, there's nothing wrong with that, giving prior notice before you come. But for me, it's just being yourself, if you happen to have a suprise visit by a friend, tell her upront that you're house is still a mess, you haven't done your grocery shopping so, you don't have anything to offer to them except a snack or something to drink. With this, I'm thinking of paying a suprise visit to my friend bringing some snacks because I am very sure that she's at home and getting ready to watch the Bears vs. Packers game. It's nice to watch the game with company than being alone.

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