Monday, November 17, 2008

Foreign Lands

Two of my students just got back from a week in France. They were there to give a training for work. Yup, two Thai men gave their presentation to an audience of French people entirely in English. This is the future of the English language people! More people speak English as a second (or 3rd...) language than speak it as a native language.

Anyway, I asked them about their trip and they just cracked me up. I asked them what they ate and the one guy complained "At breakfast - bread..." and he mimed a big long baguette "really hard bread!" and he made a face. "And yogurt" another face "and fruit. I ate fruit." I just laughed and laughed and assured them that I LOVE French bread. The other student said he had the bread and jam, and didn't make any faces. I asked them what they had for dinner. "Go to the Chinese restaurant." "Every night?" I asked. "Every night. I like to eat rice. I don't like bread... they eat bread every day!" He shook his head, not able to grasp why those crazy foreigners would rather eat bread than rice. They did tell me they drank the beer & the wine and had beef steak one night, which they liked, but one of them mimed using a knife to cut the steak as though to clarify that you can't just eat it with a spoon (I have seen Thai people eat everything, including fried chicken - on the bone- with a spoon).

It was a fun experience for me to hear about their trip. They got a small taste of what I'm living out here. I want to say that I'm far more awesome because I don't go out for western food every night. But when I was in Chiang Mai I really did start almost every day with an American style breakfast of eggs and toast. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

TAG - Code Mango


Exuberant Color said...

That is interesting that the Thai people eat almost everything with a spoon.

You should be proud of your teaching that helped them to give their presentation.

Bezzie said...

Everything with a spoon? Not even a spork? Wow. That's amazing.

Cate said...

I totally forgot about the spoon thing but that is so true! Hilarious about the bread!

Rebel said...

Yup - food is chopped up before cooking. You eat with the spoon & use the back of your fork to push the food onto your spoon.

Exuberant - I wish I could say I helped them. We spent a couple hours going through the presentation and working on their pronunciation, but I really don't know how much they improved.