In most cultures, people have their own way of making a toast. People raise their glass and say things like na zradavi, egészségére, salud, santé, zum Wohl or ganbei. And proost! here in the Netherlands. These are all local expressions for wishing you good health. In some cultures, you look your well-wisher in the eyes, in others, you take the spirit without a flinch and in a single gulp, and in yet others, you stand straight and pronounce a speech. And everywhere, the drink is to your health with an immediate breach of the pledge by having you take a glass of an often-fiery local substance that will normally not improve your health. During my many business travels, I have raised hundreds of glasses with colleagues, customers and suppliers. Small glasses in China, huge ones in Germany, sophisticated ones in France and cheap ones back home. I must be the healthiest person on earth with so many people wishing me all this well-being.
Let me share a few of my experiences from around the world – you will see how different they are!