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Norms in Different Cultures

Devika enjoys sharing her work with a friendly community. Writing opens the mind. I live in a foreign country learned a foreign language .

Unusual Norms in cultures

Unusual Norms for you to compare in your culture. Imagine visiting another country for the first time on your own. It is unusual to visit a country for the first time and become embarrassed while communicating with local people.

How would you know if you are on track with the basic communication in a foreign country?

I had no idea, that when I first visited Croatia that I should walk behind my Croatian husband. This is traditional and practised in remote villages.

This confused me as I know from South Africa a man and woman walk side by side with each other and do everything a woman can not do for themselves physically, and in Croatia, it is the opposite of that.

I had coped with physical labor while my husband worked all day on his day job, and I felt different to accept what I was not used to in my past life. To me, it felt like I was breaking a social norm in Croatia. This was the first cultural norm,

I found out for myself on my visit to Croatia for the first time. I see that this depends on culture and traditions.

I realized what is fine in my country and is a priority in my country and of the norms in Croatia. I felt it was not something I would live by since I have not done it in the past. Unfortunately, it was that and in Croatia, it is not the same as in South Africa.

The norm in South Africa is celebrating with a barbecue, called a ''braai,'' in South Africa. I felt a lack of conversation and was not informed of this norm.

What would you consider a norm to be in your country?

  • In France, if you ask for ice water, they will look at you weird.
  • It is not a norm in France to serve ice water.
  • Beverages are served at room temperature to guests.

If you are visiting India notice this norm.

  • You are not allowed to put your arm on an individual of the opposite sex.
  • It is not how you act in public.
  • This is not allowed in public to touch the other person of the opposite gender, and if you do touch the other person, it is looked at as if you should do this in private.

Japanese are not keen on asking for a tip.

  • In Japan, it is not for you to tip a waiter.
  • The norm is no tips for waiters and is an impolite gesture.

In Japan, you can save your cash.

  • Making a gesture with your fingers elsewhere in the world may sound normal, but in Venezuela, it is not considered a norm to show fingers as an okay gesture.
  • This gesture is considered an insult and should not be applied.
  • If you signal with your fingers that all is okay in Venezuela that is implied as a homosexual gesture.
  • It could be an offensive gesture to many other Venezuelans.
  • Russia is a beautiful country and people are friendly there.

When in Rome, do as the Romans do and when in Russia do as the Russians do, is that correct?

  • Do not refuse a vodka drink you will offend the Russians.
  • A kind gesture to a guest from the Russians is to drink their traditional drinks.

It is an offensive gesture to blow your nose when in Saudi Arabia.

  • I gather this is for them using toilet paper with their left hand.
  • It is a filthy gesture to a guest or in daily work to use the left hand to cook food and to shake the hand of a guest.
  • This is not allowed and is an unusual norm for me.
  • So, if you are left-handed, keep this information in mind.
  • They consider this taboo to sneeze in public.
  • You need to hold your sneezes when in public.
  • In Morocco, it is a norm to not use your left hand.

An Italian delicacy.

  • This Is ridiculous to not have a Cappuccino in the afternoon or after ten in the morning.
  • You will be looked at as weird or crazy. It has something to do with the milk the Cappuccino is made from that gives them this norm to follow in the Italian culture.
  • China has a norm of not greeting Chinese by their first names. It is a rude gesture and considered an improper way to address someone in their culture.
  • A norm development in the Chinese Heritage and is followed with great belief. I learned this norm while speaking to a German while chewing gum.
  • I found out that it is not a fine approach to chat with a German while chewing gum. This is not a good way to converse. While chewing gum and chatting to a German is rude, so is with your hands in your pockets a rude gesture.
  • It is most respected if you chat to a German with full attention and do not look the other way while in conversation. These norms sound unusual to me and other cultures around the world.

In many countries, there are Norms and I would like to know what is your norm in your country?

In every culture, a norm is agreed upon and these norms are followed by the communities. Norms are different in every culture, for example: in some cultures, eye contact is needed, whereas in other cultures punctuality is a norm.

Politeness and respect for many other cultures are a norm as well. Some cultures call these norms, taboos and practices in cultures to show a certain type of behavior in societies.

However, you see it every culture has a norm.

If you had to attend church in some weird-looking outfit that would appear to be a shame and show of embarrassment. It is a norm to dress appropriately when going to church.

In some cultures, after a heavy meal they burp and the yawn that sounds normal and is what goes on in a folkway. You need to obey these norms as you would rules or laws. The norms allow society to know what is normal and what is not family values.

Do you know what is a Cultural Norm?

People behave differently in different cultures something you had no idea, or did not pay attention to in society, Norms in cultures make people act differently. In other words, cultures are different and form a pattern that is unique to other cultures.

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A behavior and an attitude in culture come from norms in a culture. You are influenced by your culture, behaviors and attitudes. How you react in public explains your culture.

The norms are followed by you from the higher place which is the government. This follows to the schools and then to families. It is a belief that each family follows from each culture and this leads to a normative belief.

Cultural Norms


Cultures and Norms

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Devika Primić


Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on September 18, 2020:

Peggy Glad to read another comment from you. Exactly the one in Saudi Arabia is curious to me as well. Thank you

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on September 17, 2020:

It is important to know the norms of countries before visiting them. While it may be considered impolite, most sneezes come out of the blue and are hard to control. That norm is a curious one in Saudi Arabia.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on May 14, 2020:

V Kumar It is interesting to learn of the different cultures around the world and this is no exception. Thank you

V Kumar on May 13, 2020:

A lot of information about norms and customs in different countries! A very interesting compilation of so much information.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on March 21, 2020:

justmesuzanne thank you

justmesuzanne from Texas on March 19, 2020:

So interesting! :) Thanks!

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on March 18, 2020:

Rajan Singh Jolly thank you for comments. Norms in different cultures interests me and I learned lots from writing this hub.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on March 17, 2020:

Good to learn norms in other countries. I try to learn the norms of the place I am visiting before I visit it. Useful and interesting article.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 20, 2020:

Adrienne Farricelli so nice of you to comment here a pleasure to know what you think of this hub thank you

Adrienne Farricelli on February 20, 2020:

Learning about the culture of the countries we are visiting is important. I like to respect different cultures and try to fit in as much as I can, although sometime it can difficult.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 17, 2020:

Nithya Venkat Cultural norms are interesting and worth knowing of other nationalities. Thank you for stopping by always appreciated.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 17, 2020:

Thank you Paula for stopping by.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 17, 2020:

Verlie Burroughs I think that is too many ''sorry'' I say ''sorry unless it is my fault or if I had bumped into someone. In Croatia it is a NORM to PLEASE a guest no matter what it is for.Thank you for sharing your views here.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 17, 2020:

Hi John it is rude as I do think of it as well when someone bargains and won't buy unless they are given a better price.. Norms not always respected and are different in every culture. So lad you shared that here.Thank you very much for stopping by.

Suzie from Carson City on February 16, 2020: just cracked me up.......LMAO!

Verlie Burroughs from Canada on February 16, 2020:

In my country Canada, it is normal to say "sorry" all the time. It is also normal to say "sorry" about saying "sorry" so much. Sorry.

John Hansen from Australia (Gondwana Land) on February 16, 2020:

This was interesting, Devika. Here in Australia I think we are quite relaxed with our cultural norms which may explain why some Australians find themselves in trouble in other countries.

Here it is the norm to say please and thank you when receiving food or goods etc at stores, restaurants etc. I have noticed some from other countries don’t always do that. In Australia you are also not expected to tip for service and it is rarely done (though you can if you feel the need due to exceptional service.)

Many countries barter prices for goods, this is rarely done here. We usually pay whatever the advertised price is. We once had someone from China staying with us and they tried to negotiate prices on everything. This is generally seen as rude here but maybe is increasing as we become more multi-cultural.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on February 16, 2020:

An interesting article about cultural norms to be followed in a country. A bit of research would definitely help to keep up with the cultural norms. I enjoyed reading this article, thank you for sharing.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 15, 2020:

StricktlyDating thank you for comments always appreciate your presence here.

StrictlyQuotes from Australia on February 15, 2020:

This is a fantastic topic and enjoyable read.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 11, 2020:

manatita44 Thank you for the feedback I appreciate your time.

manatita44 from london on February 09, 2020:

Another interesting one and more food for thought, but yes, some things came out of primitive life and others from sophisticated life. In the old way, some were necessary. In the new, it is all because of the developed mind. Humans have forgotten the way of the Heart. Without the psychic Heart we cannot Love and without Love, we stifle.

Norms have their place, according to our levels of evolution.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 08, 2020:

Denise you are so right! What you know at home and learn of else where does make a difference to our lives.I too have learned of norms in Croatian culture mostly in the villages.

Thank you for sharing your experience with me.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on February 07, 2020:

It is hard to know there are cultural norms where you live until you go somewhere else where those norms are not followed. When I visited Germany with my 3-month-old baby, we took her everywhere sightseeing with us. Many women looked at us with scowls on their faces and I was to find out later that it was not acceptable to take a baby out everywhere. She should be at home. I had no idea since that was not a norm in the US where I grew up.



Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Linda I agree with you about that. Walking behind a man exists in remote villages not in the westernized world. I stopped doing that when I realized how it affected me. In the beginning everything in Croatia felt different and I questioned a lot about the culture to know more and still I learn something new each day.Thank you for stopping by.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Marlene, you are right! Thank you for pointing that out to me I see the responses here are incredible. So glad you shared what's on your mind. Thank you.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Harish I have learned more from you about the Norm in India. I totally agree with your comment. Unfortunately, not everyone would agree with me but that is normal. It is interesting to have such overwhelming feedback on this topic. Norms are not practiced in westernized places mostly in the villages glad you shared that. I appreciate your time to comment on this hub.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Vladimir I know what you mean about just visiting Croatia. My husband is Croatian as like you left in the ''old Yugoslavian era,'' for better life. He has family in in most parts of America and they often is it in the summer but have no intentions of living in Croatia permanently. They have kids and grandchildren there so they choose to visit every year and enjoy what they know of Croatia which is the best time of the year. For me it is different I made my life here, happy and as I have always been from within and have accepted my new lifestyle. Croatia is a beautiful country and still growing in development. I wish you the best in your endeavors. Thank you for feedback.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on February 06, 2020:

This is an interesting article, Devika. I would try to respect cultural norms in another country, with one exception. I would never walk behind a man just because I was a woman.

Marlene Bertrand from USA on February 06, 2020:

I enjoy all of your articles, but I find this to be one of your most fascinating articles. Learning about the different cultural norms was fun and I see how important it is to truly pay attention to how people act in various areas.

Harish Mamgain from New Delhi , India on February 06, 2020:

An interesting article about different cultural norms. Here in India, we have some rigid cultural norms in rural parts, whereas people are open and liberal in cities in urban area. The one you mentioned about women walking behind their husbands, I have seen it in villages. The city people being an educated lot behave different, are forward thinking, and do not follow such cultural nirman. Shaking hands with left hand or serving drinks to guests with your left hand is regarded bad in India. Perhaps people of different parts would not be fussy about foreigners not following their cultural norms strictly.

ValKaras on February 06, 2020:

Devika -- I certainly wish you happiness in Croatia, my friend. Life in any country is what we make of it. I left Croatia during its being a part of the communist Yugoslavia, and even though we adapted well in Canada, if it had not been for our grownup kids (50 and 47), my wife and I would have moved back long time ago. Being born here, our son and daughter don't share our sentiment for "the old country", and we understand. Visiting is all we can do, and the experience of it is always a deep one.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Raymond Philippe I wish you do visit Croatia someday and enjoy the summer vacation here. It is a beautiful country and is one of the top destinations in Croatia. Thank you for understanding my idea of this hub.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Eric exactly my point glad you understand it and know what I am trying to say in this hub. Thank you for making this sound easier.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Eric thank you for sharing your opinions here.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Vladimir I understand what you mean by our different cultures and living in Croatia. You left at a very young age probably for better life. I have adapted to a new Croatia learned the new Croatian words and living in the southern part of Croatia has made me see another way of life.Everything I shared on Hubpages is about my experience in the village I live in and of how I coped with it. I have nothing against the life I have here or the people I communicate with daily just merely stating the norms I have had to experience during the first three years of my life in Croatia. This is mostly in the villages that married couples are still living their old fashioned lifestyles. I however, do not mind that nor do I want to change the way they live their lives. I live my life that makes me happy and observe how others go about theirs. Thank you very much for sharing your views on this topic.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on February 06, 2020:

Devika you make such a valid point about "country" living and "city dwelling". Those within a 200 mile radius can change cultures more than different countries. I was born where our town was 12,000 souls and the only city larger was 200 driving miles away.

Wow! were our customs different. Women were revered and at the same time, in the frontier spirit treated equally in matters of work and opinion. In the 60's in the big city seemed like they were "less than".

It is just fascinating.

My wife had me going with what was custom from where she was born and bred. She really was stretching it as it was really just like she wanted it - not custom ;-)

ValKaras on February 06, 2020:

Mr. Dierker -- I got it.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on February 06, 2020:

Mr. Mr. Karas I was not referring to Croatia as a barely developing country. I was specifically not mentioning a name of one for different people may have different opines on that matter. Social and economic are just two of the milestones for development.

Ancient customs of no intrinsic value would lead me to think of underdeveloped.

ValKaras on February 06, 2020:

Devika -- You can never be a true Croatian, just like I can never be a true Canadian.

Croatia is in my blood, I went to kindergarten and to school there, lived the spirit of those people, went to the army there, got married there, and left at age of 24. After half century of life in Canada, I still get slightly choked up here with nostalgy while listening to Croatian music -- something that a South African immigrant in Croatia never will.

To be honest with you, I did find it strange that you decided to characterize a country by customs of a "village", which, because of its proximity with Moslem Bosnia, might have given you that sort of experience.

It is a well known fact all over Europe, that villages, even towns near borders with another European country may have characteristics of that country, because of historical migration and ethnic mixing.

For example, Croatian places near Hungarian border speak fluently Hungarian, those close to Italy speak Italian, and so on.

After 17 years of your living in Croatia, and after "learning SO MUCH about Croatian culture" -- I must say -- you picked some pretty irrelevant details to describe "norms" of life in Croatia..

It would be like me moving near an Amish settlement in the USA and writing about American "norms" of life as being those of the Amish folks.

You just can't blame me for protesting such characterization, spreading a pretty weird advertising about a country whose true spirit you can never really grasp on basis of your immigrant's experiences -- no matter how long you may live there.

You will forever be a South African living in Croatia, and I will forever be a Croatian living in Canada -- so let's be real about it, my friend. And I call you a "friend", because your mistaken assessment of my native country is not enough of a reason for me to stop being your friend. People make mistakes, and I am a "people" too..

Raymond Philippe from The Netherlands on February 06, 2020:

Devika, young people looking for opportunities in “big city” is something a lot of countries have to deal with. I live in a relatively small village too. Both our son and daughter don’t want to live here. Although I wouldn’t want leave our village myself. I sure want to visit Croatia one day. I have been close to Croatia but never made it all the way.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Raymond Philippe It is fair to society to cope with with such norms and you live in a beautiful country. I enjoyed reading of the Dutch Norms it gives me a greater understanding of another culture. In Croatia especially in the villages lifestyles are old fashioned and not many younger people living in the villages. I live in a village consists of 50 people.Thank you.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Pamela it as most difficult to adjust to such a different lifestyle. 17 years later here I am writing about other cultures and the one I adapted to, Thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Liz thank you greatly for comments

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Bill living in Croatia takes courage and a lot of understanding to live a different lifestyle. I chose to live here as I wish and do not follow norms. Thank you

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Paula thank you for comment. I so agree with you. Take care my friend.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

FlourishAnyway It is different in every culture and I find certain cultural behaviors weird or strange call it what you like but in 2020 and in many villages in Croatia they are living the old fashioned lifestyle. Marriages are based on tradition and that would not change for as long as it is in these villages. In Zagreb the capital of Croatia it is westernized. I speak of the village lifestyles in Croatia. In the major city lifestyle are different to that of the village.Thank you.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Ruby Jean Richert thank you for stopping by An interest that stirred up for me and thought why not write about it.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Hi Eric Croatia is fifty years westernized cultures. I know this since 2002 from personal experiences. I observed men in the village who treat their women with no respect and off course those Croatian people living abroad and come over to Croatia during summer holidays will not understand this and do not see it. They have lost their roots of Croatia and visit Croatia and demean those who have never left Croatia. I believe in any man and woman to respect one another than to treat one another as a property. Thank you my friend for stopping by.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

I totally understand your views of Croatia but when I first arrived in Croatia no one spoke English to me.. Croatia is a small country a lot of corruption and only over the ten years did they start speaking ENGLISH. Since 2004 in the EU they are forced to speak English which they do not like to do after all a tourist country so they have to speak the English language. I know what it is like to live here not know the language and to wait 6 years for citizenship and to live the hardest times here just from not knowing the life here. The reason for many of the new generation leaving Croatia for the corruption and no job crisis. The old-fashioned culture exists in villages. Croatia has becoming a modern country very fast and the saddest part of this beautiful country is the population has dropped since 2002. It was 4,5 million currently just over 4 million. Croatia is a tourist county there is no industry and have become capitalist overnight.

Raymond Philippe from The Netherlands on February 06, 2020:

The culture and norms in a country are never static and can change over time.

But the norm or culture between countries or regions can surely differ like you showed us.

Here are some examples of Dutch norms.

Freedom of speech

Whether you love our royal house very much or not at all: you are free to say that in the Netherlands. This without having to ask permission beforehand! This freedom of speech is one of the pillars of our democracy.

Women's rights: self-evident

Most young women in the Netherlands study, work and plan when they want to start having children. But they have fought hard for that. Before 1960, things were very different.

Homosexuality is a right in the Netherlands

In the Netherlands, everyone is allowed to have their own sexual preferences. The Netherlands is one of the most tolerant countries towards homosexuality. Homosexuals have the same rights as everyone else and they can marry each other.


In the Netherlands, people with a very serious and deadly disease can choose to end their lives earlier with the help of a doctor.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on February 06, 2020:

In the U.S. most anything is acceptable when you look at your list od all the different norms of other countries. I can't imagine just how hard it was for you to move to Crotia. This is a very interesting article.

Devika Primić (author) from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 06, 2020:

Vladimir Karas I am sorry you feel that way but as you said you were born and raised in Zagreb a bit of a westernized side of Croatia. I was born and raised in South Africa a westernized side of Africa and it is a modern life in comparison to the one I live in Croatia. I a not living in the city in a village so it is different lifestyle here. In the beginning I did walk behind my husband I realized that is not what I can get used to while other village women still do walk behind their husbands or away from their husbands I prefer walking side by side. I learned a lot in the Croatian culture. 17 years living here makes me more of a Croatia than those who are living overseas. Thank you

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on February 06, 2020:

As similar as the UK and US are, there are still cultural norms which can be confusing between those two countries. I can't imagine how hard it would be in Croatia for me.

ValKaras on February 06, 2020:

Eric -- I was born and raised in Croatia, in the country you are calling "barely developing and with Shia law". And I do agree with you that there would never be a "reason for you to visit there", because you would feel lost there in a 1000 years old European culture, among well mannered folks, everybody speaking a second language, mostly English.

You would find our history museums boring, because there are no paintings depicting dignified slave runners killing Natives and grabbing their land.

And you would not understand why masses of stupid tourists from all around the world carry cameras, because there is nothing to see but boring facades of centuries old cathedrals, palaces, and other remnants of a boring culture, with "intelligence" that doesn't include a smart judging a country by an odd experience of a visitor.

Really, what would a dude like you do in place where everybody knows who was Chopin, Aristotle, and that Beethoven was not the dog from the American comedy named that way.

What interesting could you possibly find in my home town, the capital, looking at an old house in the Old Town part, with a plate reading: "This house was a temporary home of Nikola Tesla". Hey, Nikola Tesla was not a football player, LOL. Will people ever stop embarrassing themselves! Why not write a Sunday sermon about not putting other people down if you know nothing about them? LOL.

Liz Westwood from UK on February 06, 2020:

It is interesting to compare different cultures and customs.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on February 05, 2020:

Well done Devika. We do not need to visit barely developing countries or countries with Shia law to find bazaar. And the other bazaar as in smorgasbord.

I had a job for a ".COM " group that was really going all international. I got paid to do what was so fun. I learned the differing cultures and the "norms". Of course our home is mixed from southeast Asia. I like studying this stuff. Also fifty years back up today.

The downgrading of women is disgusting -- left over from when women were property of men. Not in my house! no way!

Suzie from Carson City on February 05, 2020:

LOL!!! Flourish....I love your comment! Let me just add, the day I walk behind any man, is the day we are about to approach a huge, angry, hungry grizzly bear!....& then while the bear is busy eating, I'm outta there!!

Devika.....Some of these traditions/cultures are much too bizarre for even tolerate, much less follow. SQUELCH a sneeze??!! and what? Blowout our eardrums?? No thanks...AaaaahhhhCHOO! to Saudi Arabia! I guess I'm staying home, my dear friend!! LOL Cheers,Paula

FlourishAnyway from USA on February 05, 2020:

I would never walk behind my husband unless I was tired. No second class stuff here. A neighbor of mine is from a different country and insists on dealing with my husband instead of me. That doesn’t fly. I have my husband clarify that the man can deal directly with me. It may be his cultural norms but if he wants to communicate he needs to give me basic human respect. It’s 2020.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on February 05, 2020:

I know nothing about the norms of other countries, but it is nice to know, not that I will ever go there. My fear of flying keeps me home-bound.

ValKaras on February 05, 2020:

Devika -- You got me greatly surprised with the detail in which you mentioned "having to walk behind your husband while visiting Croatia".

I was born and raised there, and Croatia is known to go by norms of all western Europe -- which honors women, treats them equal, and man walks on left side of his wife, since the right side is reserved for the "one of more importance".

Even in the army, being a sergeant, I had those with no rank walk on my left side, and I had to walk on left side of a higher ranking dude.

What you describe may be the case in Bosnia, where a great number of population are Moslems -- ever since centuries back when they were occupied and converted by Turkey. Namely, it's in Islam religion that woman walks behind her husband -- NEVER in Croatia which has from ever been Catholic. If you would go to its capital Zagreb, where I was born and grew up, you would see typical European architecture everywhere, with people modernized in western style, with western norms of living.

Well, I am not exactly "offended", my friend, but I certainly am surprised that you had to walk behind your husband -- especially if he is a Croatian, not Bosnian, a Christian, not a Moslem.

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