Cultural Gestures

Last week I saw the doctor that is going to perform my surgery. An appointment usually lasts ten minutes. But this doctor really took his time. He thought of several outcomes and it took a while to come up with a plan we both could agree to. He moved my operation from ‘routine’ to ‘urgent’ and promised he would get it sorted as soon as possible. The nurse took some swaps and I had to sign a form to agree to further surgery if what he had planned wasn’t going to work.

In Germany we shake hands a lot. It is a gesture of closing a deal, or a welcome gesture or a gesture to say thank you. In my case I got up to shake the doctors hand to say thank you for taking your time with me and for moving things forward. As I was holding my hand out to him he responded with a kind of high five gesture. That felt really awkward. Why is he high five-ing me? If we were in America it may have been more culturally acceptable. It just felt weird. A friend of mine said: Maybe he thinks you are so cool 🙂 Not really??? That teaches me to shake hands as a gesture of thanks hey?

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