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inexperience and the comfort of the tribe

After just two years, I'm already so used to this kind of thing that I forget that dating is much less formal where we are from.  It's certainly true - especially for the province girls and younger ladies who haven't had serious relationships - that they don't have much experience with dates.  There is also more value here placed on not being serious until marriage, and then marriage being more serious than in the west.  Legally, it's far more difficult to get a divorce here.  There's no divorce here, according to many laws, although there are apparently exceptions.

There might be some people who take their friend just to give them a free lunch, but I don't think it's usually the main thing.  It's more about being conservative and about being nervous with new people.  And when they're nervous, they fall back on what's familiar.

I think you could find some who would be more comfortable meeting alone; they'd tend to be the more experienced, older ones.  I'm sure you've heard the cliche, that when you marry a filipina, you now have a huge extended family.  It's rare to have a filipina who isn't close with many friends and family.

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