Anyone can be a tourist and travelling around the world. But to be an Ambassador, that’s a different story. Being with another 20 youth leaders from ASEAN region is a very huge opportunity, and by this second week I got the chance to get to know more about each of our culture by cultural performance in West Nebraska!
Not as simple as that. After a very long bus trip from Omaha to Scottbluff, the opportunity is given by YSEALI for all of us to have a host family, separated into such groups and stayed at the home for 4 days. I seen it as a best way to get to know my teammates culture, there were Ploy (Thailand) and Luong (Vietnam). On Wednesday this 22th March, Together we met Kristin & Erick Weibe, a kind family that have a big curiosity in learning other people’s culture from another country. We directly went to the house that has a very classic design, a simple and quiet house with a huge dog called Lucy. There were only them who stay in the house, their childrens sometimes visit them because they already had their own job and stay in different places.
For the first dinner, we talked about a lot of things including favorite type of music, tradition, culture, religion, family, problems of countries, and also food. I personally learned how American family lives their life by this family, how they keep memories and appreciate all that has been trough their life in that house, how Kristin works in community college and what is her most concerns, how she and Erick managed their farms very well and and role-designed. I also learned about how they communicate with neighbors, to take care of them by giving private spaces as well. I do belive that my host family also learned from our conversation day by day about how we lived our family back in our countries and also how culture can really define each countries personality very well.
On Thursday night, we had our first Cultural Performance!
It was an unforgettable story to be written. We perfomed our Indonesian traditional dances in front of our host families and also we seen other beautiful dances and performance of other fellows representing their countires. Each of performance really brings a vibe that is unique, contains meaning and philosophy of countries by how fellows interpreted their country into an art which is universal for all.
Still got a surprise! My host family took us to go to the Community College Event called “Around The World” , a Gala Evening held by Western Nebraska Community College Performing Arts, which Kristin was in charge of decorations. We used our own traditional clothes as well to follow the dresscode. We saw students of the Community College sang songs from different countries, wore the traditional clothes from 33 countries around the world and had fun together that night. I got the chance to have a picture with a guy who wore a Scotland traditional clothes. He praised my dress and told that I should had been in the stage with them!
To my point of view, the best way to learn is to get used to it. And this has been very effective way to learn each others culture so far. We know, we share, and we exchange cultures so that it may goes around the world. That is a responsibility as a person to stand as an Ambassador of their country. To represent is not to show, but to exchange!
Second week has been great. Nebraska, bring it on!