How to be a polite guest of Indonesia. Part 2
Part 2: Rules of Conduct in Balinese Society
Do not forget sarong
Religion is an essential part of Balinese culture and should be treated with special care. As we have already explained, the lower part of the body is considered unclean, so do not be surprised if you may not be allowed into the temple if your legs are not covered with long clothes. If your pants or skirt are not long enough, you can cover yourself with a sarong, which can be obtained at the entrance to the temple.
Romance behind closed doors
You may have noticed that the Balinese rarely show romantic feelings - the most overt manifestation is holding hands. Be discreet and try not to embarrass others with kisses and hugs in public.
The lower part of the body is considered unclean by the Balinese, the head is considered sacred, and the middle of the body is natural. However, topless in Bali is considered a sign of rudeness, so it is recommended to wear a T-shirt or shirt when leaving the pool or any swimming pond.
Be a polite guest
Balinese people are open-minded and friendly, so don't be surprised if, after a short conversation, you might be invited to dinner. In order not to oversight, remember the following points:
- Before entering a home, you should take off your shoes.
- Quite often in a casual setting, Balinese eat with their right hand and don’t use any cutlery. If cutlery is used, it’s most often only the fork and the spoon, and no knife.
- When guests arrive on a visit, they are offered usually a cup of tea or coffee and a few cookies. The correct etiquette is that you should neither eat nor drink until the host invites you to. Don't be surprised if you find your Balinese friend keeping silent through a meal.
Perhaps, while reading the article, you were more than once surprised or even discouraged by the number of details that must be taken into account, but we hasten to reassure you - not everything is so harsh! Remember that your main means of communication is a smile and openness. And if you have any doubts how to behave, just smile at those around you and ask what you should do.