It’s true every race has its own quirky mannerisms, and us Indians we have our fair share of habits that makes us an instantly recognisable race.
1. Hypnotic Stares
Often, I see someone staring and wonder whether I am looking extra beautiful or if my eye liner is smudged. But, no! It’s just an Indian thing to stare openly at people. In some other cultures, youmightrun the risk of being beaten up for gawking!!
2. Always get our money’s worth……..and more
Okay, admittedly, I’m guilty of this,and I’m suremany of you have had those getting-value-for-your-money buffet moments, when you are so stuffed but are still wondering whether or not you can get away with another small helping without a resulting button pop.
3. Bobble head responses
I know I have to move my head up and down for ‘yes’ and side to side for ‘no’ in response to questions. However, when I am caught unawares, the head has a mind of its own. Usually, I realize I’ve done the bobble headonly when I seea puzzled facelooking back at me or am curtly asked whether I said yes or no. Oops!
4. Indian products are your lifeline
While travelling, five days is my threshold for staying away from Indian spices. After this, my body goes into withdrawal and needs a spice-fix. Many of my Indian friends don’t leave the motherland without their suitcases laden with pickles, spice powders and homemade snacks even if it means suffering the torture of having their suitcases opened and checked at customs.
5. No qualms about asking personal questions
I’ve squirmed upon hearing colleagues and relatives ask strangers personal details such as age, employeror salary! In the West, these questions would be considered an invasion of privacy!
6. Follow Indian Stretchable Time
I learned thisthe hard way after making it a point to arrive on the dot for parties, only to find other guests coming in a couple of hours later. I have sincereset my internal clock to Indian Stretchable Time!
7. Break into dance at any opportunity
Whether it’s at the workplace or on the street, I’ve seen people across all ages break into dance to express elation. And, you thought Bollywood movies were all song and dance? It’s just reel life imitating real life!
8. Don’t believe in queues
You might get defensive and say that you always queue up, but don’t tell me you haven’t seen the average Indian jumping the line at the supermarket billing counter as he has only one item whereas you have a trolley-full. I’ve had people asking to move ahead in the security queue because their flight isboarding, only to bump intothem laterhaving a leisurely breakfast at the airport restaurant!
9. Cricket is our life
Some call it the unofficial national sport, but cricket feveris more a national disease. During cricket season, the game takes priority over everything else. I’ve encountered hospital visitors politely enquiring about the condition of the patient only to move rapidly on to the more important topic – what’s the score?!
10. Professional haggler
When we shop, we Indians love a bargain and don’t think twice about negotiating to bring down the price. If the store has a sign that says ‘fixed price only’, we assume it isn’t meant for us and haggle anyway.