When you go to a new country,out of the many things,one always wonders how hospitable people out here are.When people enter your household as guests,a certain code is followed.What is this code?
Someone put forward this question to me recently as to why when you visit someone,some go out of their way to welcome you.
Showing hospitality is showing respect to the people who grace your home.When someone comes home,its respectful to ask for water or something to drink .When I was newly married,the idea of inviting people over,brought so much stress and anxiety that I would be all nervous and clenched up.Though my husband helped me out with cooking and guiding me through it (coz ,I had not learnt any cooking at all)I felt strung out,wondering what will they say about me,my food and my manners.I insisted they would keep it very simple when we came over.
Thanks to my husband,over the years,I have changed my thinking and attitude.Instead of thinking someone was showing off how good they were,I learnt it was all about showing love,giving respect and actually potraying what you have learnt over the years on your own and from your family.
My mom was an excellent hostess.She cooked these absolutely to die for meals ,especially when we entertained friends.She put out the best chinaware,she cooked what she thought people would immediately dive into and was calm and poised eventhough she had been slogging for hours.I used to wonder why? But as a wife,now I know.
When Im at a good friend's place or when they drop by,even when we are on our own,we make it a point to serve tea and snacks before sitting down to catch up on gossip.IF not some cold drinks and whatever can be served as hor d'ourves.I find this a gracious act and feel Im welcome.
In many cultures,having guests and entertaining them is a great deal.The well known hospitable people in the world are the pathans.The saying "Athithi devo bhava" is self explanatory as to how even in Indian culture,we are to respect our guests,honour their presence and make the bonds strong by being generous and kind.Even the arabs are well known for their hospitality bestowed on anyone entering their homes.MAking someone feel as if they were a part of their home is the common idealogy behind it all.
It shows what kind of a person we basically are.How well we treat our guests,reflects on the kind of person we are.It is a highly admired virtue to have.It took me years to change my concept of thinking and for some well received advice from various aunties and good friends.
Of course,they are times,when people take advantage of your generosity.It has happened to me several times but even then ,I dont mind unless it becomes too obvious to ignore.Then I let go of my kind side and 'I shall not divulge on my secret here'.My husband doesnt approve of it at all but kabhi maza chakana bhi ,mazedaar hota hai.
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