Cultural drinking straight from one’s bottle

In Ghana, drinking from someone else’s thread is so ‘cultural’ that actually when I thought about it more deeply, it made me a bit ashamed of my/our way of drinking.

In Ghana, if someone treats you to a drink straight from a bottle, it is very rude to drink from it directly. You should drink in such a way that you do not touch the thread of the bottle at all. It is not at all a simple skill to drink beer without touching the bottle with your mouth but rather by pouring it into your mouth!

Also… Taking care of hygiene is also important at other social activities. For example, when treating a guest to a sachet of water, do not hand it over but bring it on a plate or tray. I recall when I was a kid and we used to buy lemonade in pouches (with a straw inside); kids straight from the sandpit, pull out the staws with dirty hands, shared them between everyone – all in all a good way to improve the body’s immunity. But in Ghana, where cholera and dysentery are not diseases found only in books, a slightly different personal ‘culture’ has to be shown – also out of respect to another person.