Daft things that happen when you dont understand


(John Axson) #1

Went to a job this morning to clean a small car.


Arrived at the allotted time, 9am, no one home, fairly remote hamlet no one around, the car to be cleaned was not there, thinks its the wrong place (it happens) and no phone signal. Drove a k away stopped and phoned left message on answer machine, hung up.


Message alert on the phone, said, customer trying to contact me from a mobile, phoned back, he was in MY village looking for me. No no I says I'm at your house, I come to you.


OK be there in 15 hes says and duly arrives in his sand coloured yaris, I reverese into his drive in my truck he has a confused look on his face.


Where is it?


Its all in the back I cheerfully say, alot of the french peolpe I deal with struggle with the concept of mobile valeting untill they see it in operation, I have water, generator, compressor and all the cleaning products on board.


Now Very confused frenchman infront of me. Hang on he says and gets a piece of paper out of his yaris and shows me a leboncoin advert for a van I sold last week, this is what I want not a clean car!



His mum had phoned last week to book an appointment, it will have to be saturday, I asked what car she said a Yaris sand coloured do you want the registration, no its fine I will be there 9 am, is it very dirty? No. Never a mention of --buying, a van, or where I live, or even have I sold it yet.


When his mum phoned I knew it was a elderly lady by the voice but it was just a normal conversation asking her to spell the name of the village etc.


Now I know my french is only marginal but what did I miss I have these conversations all the time and apart from struggling to find an address a time or 2 never really a problem.


Still we had a laugh he makes ice cream for a living and they were really nice people but they didnt want a clean car. Oh well I was up anyway as the F1 qualifying was on this am. Have you had any daft happens like this




(ANNE MARIE HUET) #2

I did the sponge one too LOL and also the je suis chaud LOL

Did you ever say "Je suis pleine" after dinner LOL

Je suis pleine = pregnant animal LOL


(ANNE MARIE HUET) #3

Whilst working for the french AUTO TRADER I had a rep working in the area of Nice, as he was on his rounds, he had a slight car accident and had a whiplash !!!!! Of course it was deadline day so I had to find someone to replace him, I rang around all of the garages explaining that our rep had had a car accident, of course the clients were all asking "Is he ok"? I of course replied "Oui ca va bien il a fait mal au cul" (Got a bad bottom) LOLThere was often a silence for a couple of looonngggg seconds, I should of course said "Mal au cou" !!!!!!! (Giot a bad neck" )When the rep arrived to replace our poor injured rep, she called me and said "STOP calling the clients !!!!! I will do it myself !!!!!" Confused ???? Of course I was what had I done wrong :-) Bien sur le rep when he went back to work, after 3 weeks accident travail LOL, received many strange comments from the clients, when he came into the office I REALLY had to hide in the toilet "Elle est ou l'anglaise!!!! Je vais la tuer" OHHHH It was so funny poor Albert :-) But please confirm the prononciation is so alike :-) I am sure we have all made the same mistake LOL


(John Axson) #4

When I first arrived here I went down to sort the electricity out and was asked what ampage I needed. I wasnt really sure, so the very nice lady started asking what I had in the house. When she asked if had chauffage electric I very happily informed her that -no I am having a fosse septique installed- took me a while to twig on why the whole office and waiting customers were wetting em selves laughing.


(Victoria McCallion) #5

Its good to have a giggle at these stories!! We’ve all been there I think.


(Jo Blick) #6

I was expecting a story about appendages!


(Kent Shelley) #7

There’s a town in Normandie (Who’s name escapes my memory) that has an annual pedal car race through its streets and, back in ’93, our French blues band, The Cat’s Whiskers, were invited to entertain in the streets off the back of an artic’ trailer. As singer, it fell to me to waffle on between songs and make announcements. When I said, “Nous sommes très content d'être ici pour participer à cette journée de la course des voitures Pédales.” I wondered what all the sudden mirth was about - until the drummer explained that ‘pédale’ also meant ‘homosexual’.

Oops!


(Jenny Huysentruyt) #8

I met my French husband when we were very young and working in a hotel in the UK. On the first staff night out I thought he was rather forward when we told me he needed a bonk. He was of course meaning a 'banque'! He then misunderstood some customers when he was delivering breakfast to their room. On hearing 'coming' he thought they said 'come in' and waltzed in to find the lady naked on the bed and the gentleman 'en route' to get some clothes and also rather naked!

Here in France I puzzled the head master of our girls' school when I asked if they were allowed to bring 'eponges' in to celebrate Birthdays instead of gateaux! And I am sure many of us have done the 'je suis chaud' instead of 'J'ai chaud' much to the amusement of all around!! x


(Jane Canty) #9

Oh…that’s a hard one, hardly any differance in pronunciation.


(Ian Fox) #10

When my unfortunate neighbour told me she had cancer … I thought she was going to a concert!


(Ruth Deborah Rey) #11

Wraaaaah! ;))))))


(Ruth Deborah Rey) #12

All three hilarious and adorable.


(Jane Canty) #13

When my then 16yr old daughter was at Lycee, she was in the toilets with one of her friends during break time. My daughter said…well, she thought she said I’m going to brush my hair…but what she actually said in French was…I’m going to brush my horses ,so her friend said amazed…Oh, great you’ve got horses, where are they? to which my daughter replied in French…Well of course I’ve got horses, they’re on my head! When she realised what she’d said they both fell about laughing.


(Kent Shelley) #14

Bit of a Kok-up, eh Tema…?


(Annie Long) #15

Nick done that (3). Couldnt understand why my gite visitors looked so aghast when I asked where their pig was when they arrived. They kept saying they didnt have one and I kept saying it was in the confirmation letter!! I just couldnt get them to understand so I gave up asking. It took my young daughter to explain. It is now a standing joke so everytime we have guests the family send me out to collect the 'pig'


(Tema Frank) #16

I love the idea of a mobile car cleaning service. How much does it cost?

My confusion story was when we'd moved to the Netherlands and I was hired to interview a government official and write an article for a trade publication about the construction of a new bridge in Rotterdam. I was told which building to go to, which floor, and to ask for Mr. Kok. I went, and as I got off the elevator, someone asked who I was looking for. I told him, and he promptly brought me to Mr. Kok's office.

After the initial greetings, we sat down opposite each other, and he asked if I spoke Dutch. I said no, but I had been told that he could speak English. " Oh," he says. "OK". Then there's an awkward pause.

" So," I said, "tell me about this bridge."

He gives me a confused look. "Bridge? I don't know anything about bridges; I'm a psychologist."

We eventually figured out that I'd been sent to the wrong tower. There was indeed a Mr. Kok, on the same floor but in another tower, who was a construction engineer!


(jane capoani) #17

the reverse situation can be very funny aswell when my older son who doesn’t speak very good english went into a shop in London saying “Pleez I need piles”(He wanted batteries for his radio!!)the shop assistant told himm to go next door where they serve very hot curry!!


(Courtney Wilding) #18

LOL. Very funny know but at the time....!


(Nick Allbeury) #19

Woops 1

We decided to buy a puppy (chiot in French) and had been to choose the lovely lab. The following day my wife was playing golf with two French ladies and chatting away on the fairways my wife said she was collecting a chiotte next week and was longing to play with it. After a moments silence the two ladies fell about laughing their heads off - apparently a chiotte is a sh*tter in French !

Woops 2

At a supper party I explained I had put up a new garden shed and was painting it with a wood preservative. I wasn't sure what the french for preservative was but as many words are similar in french I said I was covering the shed in preservatif. The table roared with laughter - apparently a preservatif is a condom !

and finallyWoops 3

I went to hire a van at Bricomarche and at the counter I showed my driving licence and gave the check-out girl my 40 Euros day hire and as I did this she looked up and said what sounded to me like "cochon". I thought I'd misheard as it sounded as though she'd just called me a pig. So I said pardon and she repeated loudly and aggressively (as a queue was forming) "cochon " "cochon" to which I shouted back "et cochon a vous" - the crowd behind thought this was hilarious and eventually a chap in the queue explained the girl wanted a "caution" which apparently is a deposit! Very embarrassing but worth a few laughs at my expense.


(Ruth Deborah Rey) #20

No, I haven’t, but I simply love your story.