Tuesday, July 17, 2007

ANGELA'S TRAVELS - travel and language - lost in translation

In France Thanks Means No

The French no: saying mercy, 'thanks', means no thanks.

In France we used to be asked if we'd like tea, or coffee. We said, 'Thanks,' which in the UK means 'yes, thanks'.

We were asked if we'd like more. We said, 'but you didn't give us any last time.'

We were told, 'But last time you said, ''No thanks''.'

At this point we reiterated our conversation, word by word, and discovered the cause of the confusion.

The French use fewer words. They say, 'Yes, please,' or 'No, thanks,' and shorten those phrases to 'please', meaning yes, and 'thanks' meaning no.

Labels: , , , , ,

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?