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English Paper

Essay by   •  July 23, 2011  •  Essay  •  369 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,518 Views

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I couldn't understand where they were coming from and asked them to just take me home. Later, after telling my aunt my experience at the casino, she explained to me that there are three different types of English. There is proper English that Americans speak, there is the European version, and there is slang. I asked her what was slang. She explained that slang was the street version of English, it was how young people speak she said. She said in Kenya, when you want to say you were looking for something, you'd say "Na sakanya kitu " right? I said yes. She said don't you and your friends say "Natafuta kitu", which also means looked for? I suddenly felt very hot in the face and was embarrassed that night to go on any further as it hit me. I excused my self politely and went to sleep. Lucky for me, my friends' anger disappeared pretty much over night, though they did tell me kindly that if I did such an act again, they would have to "beat my a**".

From this experience, I learned that language can be a huge barrier. Some people get so caught up into trying to learn customs and practices of another land, they almost discard the language. Thinking they'll just learn when they get there, or use a translator. I knew now that was not the case. I also learned that there is a difference between learning about a culture, and actually utilizing it. When I learned of my culture from my parents, it was simple because I didn't need to know the how to. I just need to learn the what's, where, and whys. But if you plan on adapting a culture, you must be able to practice it. I am glad to say I have realized this now, and hopefully in the near future, I plan on learning even more of my Indian and Arab culture, so that my children may take pride in them, and learn that despite how hard it might be, being multi cultured can be a gift instead of a curse.

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