We learned that using chopsticks is pretty darn tricky! But, by having our own dining room, we could practice, practice, practice.
Wes actually is the better chopstick user of the two of us.
See that little white bowl? That is meant for eating all of the food out of. Do not use the plate for anything but meal waste (bones, wrappers, and stuff you just can't stomach) and the tea cup.
Chopsticks can rest upon the plate in between bites.
Napkins do not come with the table setting. Diners provide their own little packs and pass them out to others.
No need to use a tea strainer! Really! The tea leaves are thrown in there and they expand. The tea starts out light with the first cup, and is quite dark by the time you have your second or third cup. Sometimes only hot water is placed in the pot first, meaning you first rinse out your food bowl and rinse off the chopsticks before continuing - an ancient ritual that is still practiced these days. And the tea water is very, very hot!
The Lazy Susan is the answer for passing food between table members. The bigger the table, the bigger the Lazy Susan..
Dim Sum is the popular eating style in the Cantonese area where we stayed. Small bamboo baskets have 3 or 4 duplicate items inside. Rice dumplings wrap up the "goods" and porridge has many ingredients included inside. Some items defy explanation.
The concept of dessert at the end of the meal is quite different. We were served watermelon slices at the end of nearly every meal, which we quite liked.
All things noted, we tried our best to get it right. Certainly our hosts must have been amused as we tried with foods falling from our chopsticks, items being consumed with bones and figuring out how to remove of them discreetly, and just the way we conducted ourselves in general.
And, by the way, they say forks and knives are difficult for them...