Have you ever entered into that sort of “there’s no turning back/ “limbo” conversation where you are totally ready to ask someone a question, knowing that the person may or may not be pre-occupied…. but your words just sort of jump in front of your observation of their busyness and you sort of just liiiiiiiinger on the first syllable until they notice you are asking a question? (And I’m not talkin’ about that really hilarious Brian Regan thing with the whole “Whens your baaayyyby due?!”)….I’m talking about thinking someone is listening or unoccupied, when really they are not….. mmm…let me attempt to explain…
I have been trying to be very intentional about speaking in Chinese on a daily basis. The other day while at the fruit/vegetable market, I siked myself up to ask a question. Any question really…(except “where are the apples” because the apples were right in front of my face and if I asked that, I would for SURE look, and feel like a moron…) So I asked a question in Chinese to which I already knew the answer. I asked about a particular type of orange and felt so excited that the woman understood me! Granted, I did not speak in perfect Chinese pronunciation or grammar…I still tried. E for effort people.
Anyway, so yesterday I went out for breakfast with my friends and decided to get a cup of coffee to go. I went up to the counter with my friend to order, and my words got ahead of me. I thought the woman behind the counter was going to stop in front of me and take my order, and she maybe thought that I was not in fact ready to order, so we both sort of did this quick back and forth thing all the while me saying… “uhhhhhhhhhhh”. (As to not only try to say something, but quickly figure out… ” Wait, am I going to ask in Chinese or English?! ah!”)
Okay, so this “uhhhhhhhhhhh” is not to be confused with an “ughhh” like “ughhh, I hate my life” or “ughhh, I’m so tired” or “ughhh, I almost just stepped in dog poop again because I was texting while walking in Taiwan”…it was not that at all. It was more like an “ughhhhh” that sounded like someone was running their fingers across a grand piano as to quickly hit every key from a low D to Middle C. Immediately I turned to my friend once I recognized what I did and we both busted out laughing (a little uncontrollably I might add). I laughed and laughed and laughed as I realized that it is never a good idea to linger while talking to someone/ordering in English, let alone in Chinese. It was a very funny moment indeed, as I recognized that I just needed to go ahead and open my mouth and speak, whether or not I was feeling confident and whether or not someone was even ready to listen.
It is near impossible to fully explain the humor in this story, however I walked away with enough embarrassment that I feel will now force me to boldness from here on out. I’ll let you know how that works out.
On a completely separate note…I got a package today!!! Here are some of the much treasured and at risk items that I will need to either hide or share:)
– Pumpkin Spice Hot Chocolate, Pumpkin Spice Coffee, Mulling Spices, Cinnamon Plug In and other Christmasy smelling room smellies, Christmas Socks… “I like socks!!”,Christmas CD’s, and other cool little things:)
‘Tis the Season!!