Monday, November 21, 2011

In what language is your souvenir shopping list?

Does the souvenir shopping list for your Mediterranean cruise looks something like this?
  1. Scarf from Spain for Aunt Alma
  2. Tie from Italy for hubby
  3. Silk blouse from France for me
  4. Postcards from everywhere
  5. Jeans to replace John's that he tore while hanging out with new friends in the teen lounge.
una cravatta in ItaliaSure, many people around the world know English.  But since you are visiting their countries, it's not good (nor polite) to assume they will.  Besides, a little bit of sincere attempts at the local language can go a long way in keeping you from appearing to be "one of those ugly Americans" who thinks everything in other countries should be like it is here at home. (Which begs the question.... "why travel?") 

In your case, you need a bufanda for Aunt Alma, a cravatta for your husband, chemisier en sole for you and pantalones vaqueros from Spain (or just plain ol' "jeans" if he's ripped them just before you dock in France or Italy) for your son. 

You'll still need to study clothing sizes in other countries as well as currencies (Euro in the three countries I've mentioned), but here's a bit of a "cheat-cheat" to help you with the names of various pieces of clothing.

Enjoy your shopping experience.  Consider any language, culture and currency challenges as part of the adventure! 

By the way, if you need to buy postcards to send home to your loved ones (and to your favorite travel agent), ask for postales in Spanish,cartoline in Italian and carte postales in French.  We'll be watching our mail! 

~ Connie

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