Do you have any language barrier stories?

Let me give you an example. This happened to me when I first moved to Spain and my grasp of the language was limited to "hello", "yes", "no", "thank you", and "bye". I used to do most of my shopping in a nearby shopping centre which had a supermarket on the bottom floor.
One day when I was walking in, there was a charity group saying something in Spanish and handing plastic bags to people. At this point in time, Spain didn't charge for plastic bags and so my first thought was that they were a eco group trying to recycle plastic bags by giving people one at the start of their shop. I took one, said thank you, did my shop, and then left with some food in the plastic bag and the rest in my backpack.
As I was leaving, I noticed that on the opposite side of a wall (which wasn't visible when entering the store) was a large box full of food inside plastic bags. Turns out they were collecting food for homeless people. By that point it was too late so I just left with the bag.

But my favourite language barrier story would be this one:

#BakedHaggis #Cammysquestions

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Most Helpful Girl

  • I'm from the UK and on a trip through western USA we stopped in a small town and somebody overheard my husband and I talking and the person turned around and said "Gee, are you French?" - talk about the two nations being divided by a common language!

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    • I actually had a similar experience. My mum and sister came to visit me in Spain (we're all Scottish) and we went to this cafe that I liked. Sitting at the table next to us were about 5 or 6 girls from the US and we overheard them discussing whether or not we were speaking German

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    • @Other_Tommy_Wiseau I'm not too sure but I remember we were on our way to San Diego from the east.

    • That could be anywhere 😂

Most Helpful Guy

  • yeah. my friends are russian and i have french friends and let's just say we weren't all fluent in all 3 languages. it wasn't so bad with my italian friends because i speak italian.

    i did have a funny story when i was trying to learn russian... aparently saying "i'm 21 years old" sounds a lot like "i'm a whore"... who knew? :|

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What Girls Said 3

  • Oh once an old British guy asked me where he can buy some drugs, I think he meant cigarettes or I don't know but for some reason I thought he ask me where he can buy weed and I told him its illegal in this country
    After we separated I realized I am an idiot

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    • LOL! I would've thought he meant weed also.
      One time, we were camping in Canada with my mom and cousin. This Indian (native American) security guard came to our campsite and asked, "Do you want any grass?"
      My mom said, "I have plenty of grass, thank you." Than my cousin say, "Aunt, he was asking you if you wanted to buy marijuana"

  • yeah every time i get people slipping into my dms for pics an shit i tell them i don't do that and its like im speaking another language they must not speak English.

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  • Seems like a lot of people on here don't have a handle on the English language, even those who live in the UK and have college degrees.

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    • You also get a lot of people aged 30+ who not only use text talk but also have absolutely no grasp of grammar. It's a bit embarrassing!

What Guys Said 5

  • There was this white South African girl in my school, and apparently in South Africa they call floppy disks "stiffies", and one day there were a bunch of men in the computer lab and she called out, "Does anyone here have a stiffy?"
    And the entire class just gave her a weird look.

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  • On an early trip to Indonesia, it was just after sunset and I got caught in a downpour. I stepped into a store front to get out of the rain and found myself next to two women with the same idea. One was kind of cute. Neither spoke English and at the time, I only knew a few words of Indonesian.

    Fortunately, "hotel" and "seks" sound the same.

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  • I have coworkers that are fresh of the boat from Cambodia. I often have to have a middle man to talk to them. They are really nice but I often have to make sure i repeat myself a lot.

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  • Two.

    One that I created on purpose because I couldn't be bothered to deal with someone.

    The other one is legitimate.

    First one, some guy was very slow on his bike so I took the corner before him. He was mad at me and yelled. I said in Hebrew 'מה?' meaning 'what'. He started complaining to me so I said 'אני לא מדבר הולנדית', meaning 'I don't speak Dutch. I said the same about English. He blattered on so I said I couldn't eat rice because I don't like. Eventually he gave up.

    Other time, I was in Poland. Polish police (travelling with an Israeli government-funded education group so A LOT of police present) said something to me in English and I couldn't understand what he was saying (I was 13) so I completely ignored it. Apparently he was saying that we have to wait inside the hotel because they were doing a routine check. Those routine checks ended up being checking for bombs in the bus.

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  • Hahaha 😄

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