Cultural Differences

Now that I have spent quite some time in London, it is time for me to comment on the cultural differences between Londoners and New Yorkers. First noticeable difference is that Londoners considered themselves Londoners all the time. What do I mean by that? For example, when asked to identify themselves, Londoners answer “Londoners” most of the time despite their race (Asian, white, black…etc). On the other hand, when asked to identify themselves, New Yorkers throw out all sorts of answer: Californian, New Yorker, Chinese, Asian, African American…etc. This difference shows that Londoners (maybe all British?) have very strong ties to their community and think of themselves as part of the community while New Yorkers are relatively severed from their community and think of themselves as passers-by to the city.

For those of you who are not yet convinced, just compare how clean London’s street is compared to New York’s. Both are cities of high traffic, yet London’s street is much cleaner than New York’s street. Are New Yorkers just a group of people with bad hygiene practices? The better answer, I think, is that New Yorkers simply do not care.

Another cultural difference that I notice is that Londoners live in a much slower pace than New Yorkers do. In London, everyone is chilled and relaxed. You see a lot of people sit outside of restaurants, enjoying the meal as well as the weather, during meal times. You don’t see that in New York. In New York, you see two things: huge queues and people eating on streets. They rarely have time to sit down and enjoy their meals. They are always in a hurry.

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