Malaysia may only have one season all year round, but do not be fooled – the sky can be pretty temperamental. The sun may shine, with hardly a breeze, but the wind can also blow, thunder and lightning can light up the skies and rain can flood our streets. Instead of hiding at home, we Malaysians make use of our many shopping malls to stay as cool as cendol (sweet iced dessert) or to seek refuge from the storm.
Now, when it comes to food, our spread really is diverse, with plenty of rich spices, sauces and flavours that truly pamper our taste buds. Choose from Nyonya dishes (a mix of Chinese and Malay flavours from the Peranakan culture) to our favourite Mamak food (a blend of Indian and Malay fare) and marvel at the variety.
Moving on to dirty business! No, not in that way – we mean toilets. Some places in Malaysia only have squat toilets. Some argue that this is preferable due to hygiene reasons, while there are others who would still rather have toilet bowls. Are you team squat toilet or team toilet bowl?
What is green on the outside, brown on the inside and loved by kids, adults, uncles, aunties, cats, expats and locals? MILO, of course. We consume it in various ways, either as a drink, desserts… and some even eat it with rice!
Malaysian culture frowns upon wearing shoes indoors. Not only is it seen as dirty, it is also considered disrespectful because, well, why would you want to bring your dirty shoes into a clean home?
Do you ever feel uncomfortable when you see a couple getting frisky in public? Our more conservative culture suggests that it is best to keep anything more than hand-holding and a peck on the cheek behind closed doors. We Malaysians may be shy about certain things, but we sure aren’t shy about staring at such behaviour.
Forget cutleries! In Malaysia, it’s completely normal to eat using your hand. Nasi lemak, roti canai, and banana leaf rice are all fodder for your fingers. One thing to remember though - use your right hand to eat, as your left hand is considered ‘dirty’ in the Muslim culture.
What other things can you add to the list?