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03/09/2011

Comments from an Indian traveller...

I recently met an Indian doctor who had traveled to Europe…

He had to shorten his stay in Paris and Dublin because it was to unbearable!!

 

His most traumatizing experience? A woman skeeping the queue!! (Kind of ironic coming from an Indian…)

 

Like everyone, he told me that “French people are horrible because they know English and they refuse to speak”. I took the time to explain that “know English” is a bit too much. Learning a language at school for a couple of yours is not enough to feel comfortable answering when someone asks you a question out-of-the-blue in English. He seemed astonished that we don’t speak with our family or friends or anything…He looked so dumb at that point that I even had some fun, adding that maybe people could not understand his accent. And it has not even occurred to him that he had a funny one!! (I remember my first days in India when I could not make out whether people were speaking to me in English or any other language).

 

If he had gone on his travel agent website, he would have read: “Take some time to learn some of the local language - even just a few sentences from a phrase book will show that you've made some effort. Most people are normally friendly and welcoming as long as they're given the right signals.”

 

Instead, the only advice he remembers from them is: “German younsters are fond of bikes. But don’t sit or even touch them.”

How weird!!

02/04/2011

Ordeal number X: putting up a painting

(Sweet revenge on my landlady who keeps bugging me)

 

1. Take a nail, a hammer and make a start on the wall. Oups, the wall is in concrete, I just made an ugly little splinter.  

2. Ok, I’m gonna find someone to do it for me. But how?? Where??

3. Oh, how convenient, downstairs there is a guy who makes frames. He must know… Yay ! His neighbor key maker / plumber can come home and do it.

4. He put his dirty fingers on my white wall and he pierced…

5. Hum, why does he take his matchbox out?

6. Hum, why does he put matches in the hole he just pierced?

Well, just because I have met the Indian MacGyver !! He puts in the hole a lot of matches, knock a screw into it, and start screwing. It’s eco-friendly: no need of plastic rawplug!!

 

And now, I have a thought for the Indian guy who land in Paris and wants to put up his painting. Who is going to tell him that he need to go and buy nails from the do-it-yourself megastore, borrow a drill from his neighbour, be strong, pierce the wall and try avoiding hurting himself? Who is gonna tell him huh??

02/02/2011

Correspondence with my landlady - End of the story (at least I hope !)

Suite of my last post...

 

I answered my landlady:

 

“Do you mean you need to take stuff in the room or actually sleep in the room?

Honestly, I would not be too comfortable with the second option...”

 

I was very worried though and she was not answering. What if she would just come and stay? Imagine me explaining the cops that she is my landlady and I am the tenant but she is the one they should throw out?? I can pretend all that is fun, if she wants to get rid of me it is very easy for her and I love my place!

 

So I called my broker, who called her broker (and cousin). The guy said that he had received a mail from my landlady saying that I was not comfortable having her over and he should find her a place for 3 weeks.

And do you think she would have told me???

I swear…