Communication Fail

An interesting thing about Ocean City is that there are many people working in the hotels and stores who are from other countries. I suspect this is true of many vacation destinations throughout the United States, probably the entire world. Most of these workers are on a student work program, but others seem too old to be the typical college aged students. I don’t know if they come on a work share program or not. It doesn’t matter either way, but sometimes the communication is a little difficult.

I have never had a problem talking to anyone, and I mean anyone. I talk to everyone, especially when I am in a good mood. So, it is not surprising I talk the most on vacation because I am in the best mood.

It seems the people who work in the hotel industry, especially maids and maintenance crew, work every day and every hour of the day. I am always amazed by how often I see the same people and I try to make them feel appreciated even if all I do is smile.

Last summer, I walked out of our room and saw the same girl I had seen all week. She was reading a newspaper I believe was in English, but I am not sure.

I couldn’t resist asking, “Do you ever go home?”

Do you understand I am joking? Do you understand what I mean?

The girl is reading a newspaper  (I believe is in English) and she looks up at me and says, Go home?”

I see the confusion in her eyes as much as I hear the tone of her voice.

Yeah, I was suddenly without any words. I just shook my head in embarrassment and walked away. I hope she wasn’t offended, thinking I wanted her out of my country.

I don’t think I will be traveling overseas any time soon. I can’t imagine how many times I would end up saying something completely offensive while simply wishing people a nice day.

Have you ever had a communication fail?


I love gardening and magical beings. My profile is a garden ready to be created,

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11 comments on “Communication Fail
  1. Phil Ryan says:

    My slightly older brother chose ‘Peter’ as his confirmation name. Back then he had long hair and when one of the old ladies asked, after Mass, what name he had picked her response to his reply was, “Oh Rita’s a lovely name.”
    I think in your case, Manee, she was brushing up on her poor English by looking at (rather than reading) an English paper and had no idea what you meant. Therefore no offence caused in the slightest. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Joanne Sisco says:

    I dated and eventually married a man whose English was about on par with my French – ie almost non-existent. Communication failures have been commonplace with us.

    I think I’ve learned over the years not to make flippant remarks intended as humour. Even 33 years later, they still have a tendency to fail 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Dan Antion says:

    I’ve had numerous communication failures when talking to my wife, and we both speak English. It’s usually the result of me trying to give a compliment or to make her feel better.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. mariemalo says:

    I was at a party on an Indian Reserve, outside of my home town. My boyfriend and a bunch of friends were around a campfire when a very drunk Native American staggered over and tried to grab a beer out of our cooler. My very drunk friend gave him a shove, saying, “Go Away. You don’t belong here.”
    The guys face turned red in anger and punches were thrown. From where I was, I could tell the ‘you don’t belong here’ comment, meant so much more to him, when my friend only meant, you don’t belong here…around this fire…wrong party dude.
    I always teased my friend afterwards for telling a drunk Indian (that’s the preferred name around my home town, so I’m not being politically incorrect), that he doesn’t belong when we were visitors on the reserve.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. joey says:

    My communication fails miserably with people who are literal or like to argue semantics. I’m better off with languages I stumble in than actually trying to talk to people who are literal or like to argue semantics. I’ve got no patience for it and inevitably I seem flakey and flighty and then I just can’t even. I hate measuring words. I’m not diplomatic enough to calculate so carefully. Psh.
    A lot of times, I have to shrug it off and be like, It Ain’t Me, It’s You, but you know, quietly to myself so no one has to tell me ain’t isn’t a word or how self-centered I am. lol
    I’m fortunate these people are few and far between in my life. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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