Friday, August 05, 2011

Translation, Please!

We have been enjoying the company of two very lovely young ladies from China for the past few days.  They arrived Tuesday evening.  It has been fun, and kind of nerve-wracking, to watch them experience our foods for the first time (nerve-wracking because of the vastly different cultural approaches to eating and to being a guest or host.  I want them to like everything or feel free to say they don't.).  It's not often someone will say to you, "I have never seen anything like this" and be talking about cheddar cheese. 

Wednesday night was their welcome party.  Our girls, as I've taken to calling them, were surprised to find that the party was going to be at a park.  The evening was full of cooler weather and minimal wind (double hooray!), good food and fun games.  During a rare quiet moment, Katrina smiled at me and said words no one wants to hear.  Ever.

"Your husband must have been very handsome when he was much younger."

Okay, I might have giggled a little when I agreed that he was very handsome when he was much younger, but she continued.

"You too. I saw pictures of you on the wall and you were very beautiful when you were younger."

At least she recognized that it's me in those photos.  When we pulled them out, Mad looked at them and pointed out her daddy.  I pointed at my own picture and asked her, "Who's that?"
"Um, a friend."


Bossy Betty said...

OH! Don't you know in China those remarks mean that you are even MORE lovely now???

Emms said...

Ha ha ha. I've got nothing else. Poor Shan.

Carmen said...

LOL - indeed a block of cheese or even boar's head ham is something a Chinese person has never seen.

JT said...

HA! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! SO freaking funny.

Anti-Supermom said...

Being that Henry is in Chinese Immersion school and I've experienced the backhanded compliment a million times from teachers and the such, I just have to say...

HA-HA :)

Glad you get to experience it too!

renegademothering said...

You should have kicked her in the teeth.

Once, at my inlaws' dinner table with like 20 of us, my daughter says "Mama you're pretty" or some such nonsense and my mother-in-law says "You should have seen your mom when she and your daddy first met. She was so pretty, so thin and gorgeous!" And my daughter looks slightly confused and a little shocked, says "um, I think she's STILL pretty." And then my MIL realized what she'd said and the whole table heard and it was uncomfortably silent and I kicked her in the teeth (my MIL, not my daughter). The end.

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