Speak-a da lingo

When you’re in a different country (or the same country, but a different region), where the language is nominally the same but there are also real differences, what do you do?

Do you stick to your own words, phrases and pronunication? Or do you pick up the same lingo as the locals?

I’m getting a little confused here: do I ask for chips or crisps, or both?

And, perhaps more importantly, do I wear thongs on my feet or as underwear?

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7 Responses to Speak-a da lingo

  1. Ivan says:

    If they’re hot, they’re chips. If they’re in packets in the supermarket they’re still chips, but you’ll be understood if you ask for crisps at least. Probably.

    And I can’t understand why anyone would want to wear thongs anywhere other than on their feet… The alternative can’t be comfortable, surely.

  2. azahar says:

    I can’t remember what I did in England – Canadians spell the same as the English but most of our vocabulary is USian. I think I ended up gradually saying things their way, and even then people would deliberately not understand my accent. πŸ™„

  3. woodpigeon says:

    I think it’s a gradual thing too. I travel to the US a lot and I often find myself using American phrases just so that I can be understood. I don’t think too much about it though.

    Then again, why not adopt a real upper-class accent when you are over there! Go the whole hog! Call them all “colonials” and see how it goes down πŸ˜€

  4. psychocandy says:

    I’ve never had much trouble communication, or being understood, while travelling in other countries than my own. Traveling within the US, however, I have frequently had people tell me they couldn’t understand me because of my accent. Especially near my grandparents’ old home in North Carolina. Try ordering a “soda” south of the Mason-Dixon line and everyone pretends they have no idea what you mean…

  5. Piereth says:

    The word ‘bollocks’ makes Australians laugh, as does ‘Bugger’ when said in the cut glass accent of a Pom. Go with the local lingo. Just steer clear of the question intonation!

    Gorgeous pics, my honey. Lovely place to live! It’s raining here…

  6. Teresa says:

    As long as you don’t wear them on your head, you should be okay.

  7. Ed says:

    Piereth: “Just steer clear of the question intonation!…”

    Now that is probably the hardest thing to do… after a while you will feel it luring you in…

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