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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I'm bilingual now

I've been living in Singapore now for just over a year. It's been fun listening to all the different languages and different accents. They are always so beautiful and exotic. It's one of the things I don't think I could ever tire of.

English is one of the 4 official languages of Singapore so that has helped us communicate with just about everyone. The kids take Mandarin in school and are pretty good at it too. They were able to talk to a few people while we were in China. It was awesome listening to my kids speak a different language. I have been studying Mandarin but I am no good. The voice inflections get me and I get too flustered. Our trip to China showed me just how crappy my Mandarin skills are!

I have however picked up on another language spoken here although it isn't an "official" language it is spoken everywhere! I speak of British English! Seriously! If facebook will let me choose it as a language I speak then I will choose it! Yes my friends I am slowly becoming very adept at speaking British English!

Here are a few examples for you non-believers.
My friend Tanya uses a pram for her children.
Notice that I say pram and not stroller. Pram is British English

Here's another...
Natalie loves to ride in the lift.
Lift is British for elevator. See how good I am at this? It's almost like my ancestors came from Britian or something!

Bob likes to put his beer in an esky.
In America we would say cooler but the British are so proper they like to say esky.
Even pinterest recognizes the difference between British English and American English as recognized by this poster....

So, Now on a hot summer day the kids will be offered cold on a cob instead of popsicles.
It has been hard to learn the differences in some places. I told the maintenance guy I liked his truck and he did not understand until I said I liked his lorry. It can still be confusing. Next I will try to learn the spelling of British English. How to spell movie theatre instead of movie theater, or go to the shopping centre instead of the shopping center. Being bilingual is hard but so fascinating.


Rebecca said...

haha! Slappy ham?? WTF. I have never heard that one! Don't you have to use a different metric system here too?

Laurel said...

What? you don't use slappy ham all the time? I'm amazed! The metric system is just one big headache for me! I can't even cook here without doing some sort of stupid conversion!

KJ said...

Love it! But I think the Brits say 'pusher' or 'buggy' and pram is Aussie.

Next thing you'll be spelling colour and favourite with U's!

Laurel said...

I obviously still have a lot to learn! It's so hard being bilingual! Is there an Aussie English too? I may need to try that next! LOL
My favourite colour is bleu!