Not going to learn to say…

We have finally moved into our apartment. We will start language school in about two weeks. It has been frustrating not being able to understand what people are saying or speak to them. The team here has been a huge blessing to us in helping us translate and speak for us while we are in transition. But you do find yourself everyone once in awhile where it is just you and a native speaker, so what do you do, charades! Usually everything works out, but I was thinking that I need to at least know a phrase that lets them know I don’t speak Chinese…then I thought “yet” … “I don’t speak Chinese yet.” Meaning, I decided I am not going to learn to say “I don’t speak Chinese.” But rather I learned to say “I am learning Chinese. This is all I can say for now.”

3 thoughts on “Not going to learn to say…

  1. Josephtpitts

    What a novel way to approach that sort of situation. In that case the native speaker will actually give you a chance and try to work with you.

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  2. Moscowrunner

    :) Just make sure you don’t agree to everything. I once went as an interpreter with a missionary family up to St. Petersburg. We got separated in the subway and I could see that they were talking to someone at the far end of the subway car. They were nodding their heads and saying “Dah. Dah. Dah.” And I was thinking, oh, no what did we just agree to? We pulled into our stop. I got out as fast as I could and ran to the other end of the train car. Just as I got there I saw this poor elderly woman getting off of the train and a woman inside the train saying “So you will take her to the railway station right.” And the family was saying, “Dah. Dah. Dah.” Long story short, we did help her, which I don’t regret, but we also missed our bus, and the bus after that, and the bus after that. Learning is great fun! :)

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