About Opportunities for Communication

(travel blog)

Saturday morning. My family and I came to the center of the Polish city of Gdynia to take advantage of the wonderful weather and take a walk along the sea coast. As we approached the parking lot, we got out of the car. My father went to the parking lot to pay and get a check while my mother and sister and I toured the area.

A woman and a man with pensive expressions stood by the parking lot. When my father approached, they began to ask how to pay for their car in English. Although my father didn`t even understood a single word, it was obvious that they could not keep up with the parking meter.

It looked really funny: people were trying to say something to my father in English, and he told them in Polish and with some gestures how to choose the time of parking and where to enter their car number. After almost 15 minutes of suffering and “bridging the communication abyss” between them, everything was managed. The most ironic moment happened when my mother asked my father in which direction we will go now, and he answered her in Russian, and suddenly the man and the woman began to speak Russian as well! It turned out that they came to Poland from Latvia and studied Russian not long ago. Did it worth to try to negotiate for so long? Obviously not. They could simply ask from the very beginning what languages ​​they could speak …

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