Universality Time (Quantification)

Most rural Paraguayans think of time relating to agriculture, thus they refer to time in crop seasons, fruit seasons, or count on hours of sunlight.  An example of using their time in accordance with light is that most Paraguayans take advantage of the full moon’s light to work in their crop fields.

Universality Space (Concepts of Boundaries)

Often times there will be buses that only have a few people on them, but Paraguayans tend to want to sit close to one another on the buses.  There is more comfort in being in close proximity to one another than be far away even if you are complete strangers and it is very hot.

Also, when drinking beverages with friends, family, or strangers; most people share just one cup and take turns taking sips.  There is usually one person that is dedicated to serving and the cup will be passed around the circle leaving enough for each person until it reaches the server again.

Universality Action  (Recording Systematization)

It is rare to receive a receipt for a purchase unless you are in a formal commercial store.

Point of References Time (Laws and Rules)

People mainly use the sun as a frame of reference.  The day begins when the sun rises and that changes at different times of the year due to say light savings.

Point of References Space (Descriptions)

Common directions involve nature.  When navigating around in search for something many people will give directions as follows: “turn right at the cedar tree” or “follow the creek until you get to the dirt road, then look for the house with the big mango tree in front.”

Point of References Action (Formal vs. Non- Formal Reality)

Most agreements even when formal are based on “giving one’s word.”  My neighbor got a large loan from another neighbor’s family member to put money down on a house.  There was no written agreement to hold my neighbor to their word.  There was trust and formality by word of mouth.

Structuring Time (Future Orientation)

Most people only buy groceries for what they are going to eat that day.  Even if they are probably going to use some of the same ingredients the next day, they will just buy what they need for each meal and send their kids to the store at any moment when they need something else.  There is only really a sense of the present when planning.

Structuring Space (Planning)

When arranging a purchase for a property, it is perfectly normal to say that “x” property runs from the creek to Mr. Jones’ orange tree orchard.”

Structuring Action (Rationality)

Most people use a very informal tab system to keep track of what they owe at a general family store.  It is usually just a piece of notebook paper listing the items.  No dates are recorded and it is just a system based on trust.  Most people pay their tab when they can (usually once a month), but may not be able to pay it off all at once.  It is basically an informal credit system.