Speak easy

19 Oct

Moving can be a difficult thing.  There are so many things to consider and once you’ve moved, there are so many things to get used to.

I used to think the best places for me to move to would be the US or Britain.  Then I added Australia and New Zealand to my list.  The way I figured it at the time, as long as it was an English-speaking country, I’d be okay.   Judging by the number of “Do you come from America?” type questions I got asked(have been in England 2 years and I don’t think I’ve lost the American accent just yet), I wasn’t too wrong.

What I’d forgotten was the small nuances in the difference of the WAY they spoke English.  Having grown up on Sesame Street (not literally!), I ,obviously, spoke American English (apparently, when people heard me talk, they said they didn’t expect me to be “so American”! ha!).  The Philippine Education system is based on the US system so the English that is taught in schools, while standard, is basically American English, with American colloquialisms, spelling, definitions, etc.

I needed to remember that in the UK a check was a cheque, the theater was the theatre, realize was realise, to be disoriented is to be disorientated.  I needed to remember that inquiries were enquiries and that a filet was a fillet and that it was pronounced how it was spelled fil-let as opposed to pronouncing it the French way.  I also had to remember my “ou” in colour, favour, neighbour, etc.

When I used to work in a call centre, our team leader always called me grammar police because I always corrected his spelling or his grammar and he usually came to me for help with letter writing and such.  But I find that I’m learning more about the English language these days, more than ever.  The only difference is, I find that I’m having to unlearn what I learned!


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