I've often had students ask about the differences between the US and China. I usually tell them, the more I look at the differences, the more I realize how similar everything is...and that's not always a good thing. Well, last night I found a real difference.
Mr. W. took us out to a hot pot restaurant for lamb hot pot. I was worried because the sign on the door advertised dog and cat. It was a decent meal, though most of the lamb was skin, fat, and bone. At the end of the meal we decided to take the remaining broth and meat home--there was a significant amount left over. My mother-in-law wasn't satisfied with the quality of the take-away containers (I still don't know why), and asked if they had anything else. This was met with the usual response of meiyou. Mr. W. jokingly said that we'd take the pot home. Turns out, we did. For a little extra on the bill, they gave us the pot and added a lid.
I found this amazing. I doubt any restaurant in the US would ever do something like this, even if offered the full cost of the pot. Sometimes service in China far surpasses that of the US (and you don't have to tip here either).
On the topic of service, there was a fat loudmouth at a table near us who was absolutely rude to the staff (and rather obnoxious upon seeing a foreigner in the restaurant). He called for the waitress and when she didn't immediately come running to the table he shouted, "What's the matter? Are you deaf?" And then proceeded to use a crude profanity that involved the waitress' mother. I hope the staff spit in his food; he deserved much worse.