Sunday, June 1, 2008

At the Train Station

I went to Caen today. It hasn't changed all that much, which was comforting. I walked up to the campus and thought, "Whoa, it looks clean here! No new graffiti or fliers... WHOA!" Whoa, because I had just tripped over a broken bottle. Then I ran across a bonfire pit, an umbrella in a trashcan, and I ton of Kanterbrau boxes. Same old Caen. :)

At the train station when I was waiting to get my return tickets, this guy cut in front of me in line. He was an English speaker. Unfortunately, the woman at the ticket counter was not. This is how their conversation went:

Man: "I need..."
SNCF Woman: "No English!"
Man: (tries to proceed in English) "I need..."
SNCF Woman: "No English!"
Man: (failing to see that this woman doesn't speak any English) "WHY!?"

(They proceed to yell "No English!"/"WHY!?" at each other a few more times.)

Man: (to another Anglophone behind him) "Why must she force me to speak French?"
SNCF Woman: (In French) "Because this is France and I am French!"

Then it got too ridiculous, so I intervened. English-speaking man didn't say thank you. A nice American couple thanked me instead. So there you go: I, Emily, savior and protector of Anglophones everywhere.

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