During our trip to the Czech Republic and Austria I had a huge opportunity to use my German language skills. I was always the one Jim and James relied on to ask where things were located in the stores, to converse with servers in restaurants, and to read road signs and get directions. Well this time, with the advent of Google Maps and Google Translate my meager skills were less in demand.
The day I really became aware of the embarrassment I was causing was when I was at the deli requesting different portions of luncheon meat. When I turned to ask Jim a question he was gone. When I turned to James to ask where did Dad go, I caught James in the act of quietly backing away, tiny stealthy little steps until he was far enough away to turn and make a run for it. I still had fun and, I know deep-down inside they love me for trying. I’m OK at cobbling small sentences together, especially good with verbs but I need to learn a lot more nouns. GoogleTranslate was even stumped with Caraway Seeds, easy Kummel or Majoram slam-dunk Grebelt.
Take away here is all of us should know some basic words from the language in the country we’re visiting – please, thank you, hello, goodbye, bathroom, excuse me, how to count to ten, yes, no, I and you. So now go off and travel, learn some words. Throw some nouns on your list!