Linguistic confusion

In Asia nobody expects a European to speak the local language. The fact that we do know a little Chinese and Thai elevates us to intellectual status amongst the natives. Here, in South America, things are a little different. With the Spanish language being not just a major European language but a major world language we are expected to have at least a little knowledge, alas we don’t. This morning during breakfast the receptionist approached us with a query. The following conversation was conducted in Spanish;

‘Good morning.’ Said the receptionist.

We turn to her drop jawed like a pair of imbeciles recently released from the asylum. Composing ourselves we reply slowly,

‘Good morning.’

She then asked, ‘Please may we dispose of the boxes from outside your room?’

Hearing the word room we draw a hasty assumption and giving our imaginations free rein to fill in the gaps we replied,

‘two more nights please’.


‘Two, maybe three.’

She looks confused, ‘the large boxes outside your room, can we throw them out?’

Large…Room, Ahh, she wants to offer us a larger room. ‘No, no thank you, is ok, we sleep in same one tonight.’

She looks puzzled, ‘You will sleep in a box!?’

‘Si si señora si’.

She ran off to find a translator.


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