Communication Tip #87
I just returned from Europe, and in England, I was fascinated by the differences in sentence structure.
Here’s an example: In a restaurant, we in the U.S. usually ask, “Where are the restrooms?”
One person said to me, “You Americans talk as if you rest or bathe in those rooms.”
In England the phrase is: “The toilet. Where is it?”
When I started saying those words—in that order, I was amazed that people immediately understood. Prior to that, they hesitated and some seemed confused.
In Italy and Germany airports and train stations, I also saw versions of the word “toilet” on signs and doors.
So, I’ve learned to not rely on the “restroom” euphemism abroad.
And all along, I thought I was “minding my manners.”