– Hey Agnė, did you have fun last night with your friend Aistė, she is really crazy, I like her.
– Jo Jo !! She is fun, but she is not my friend, we are classmates.
– Really, how long do you know each other ?
– Three years.
– Say what ? :O
This is a very common scenario. If you ask a Lithuanian how many friends they have, you will get an answer between zero to six. It seems that since child they are taught about this, to be careful with whom you trust because people are bad, really bad (sometimes). At the beginning I thought it was because of the oppression during soviet times, when you had to take care of the spies all the time. The person close to you could be one and give you trouble. Actually, this happens in China nowadays and I was shocked when a Chinese intern told me this. Some Latin American countries lived a similar situation but with less repression. Also, the fewer the friends, better the quality of friendship.
Usually it takes a lot of time to become friend with a Lithuanian, I asked and usually it takes years and years and years. I got curious and asked if the same happens for a sentimental relationship, the answer I got was: It usually take a few months (2 or 3). It is interesting to see that it might be easier to get a girlfriend than a friend.
Since I have latin blood, I usually friendzone everyone, so if we meet one night, got totally drunk, watch a football game together or got into a fight, then I would consider you my friend. But Lithuania made me change this concept, and made me rethink. Maybe I don’t have my friends, but they are all pažįstamai….or spies.
I consider to have made many friends while living in Lithuania, from many nationalities, religions, colors, mindsets, sexual orientation, real ones and virtual ones. They added a lot of value to my life and I wish to see them again someday. Unfortunately because most of us were on internship and our time together was short, but we enjoy it (A LOT). We will always have Lithuania in our hearts.
Check my other posts related to Lithuania:)
#1 Work Enviroment
#2 Cultural Shocks
#3 More Cultural Shocks
#4 Kissing, streets, sun and soviet times
#5 Girls Girls Girls !!
#7 You are (not) my friend
#8 Beach walk, flowers, quiz and mosquitoes