Talking to Taxi Drivers
Trip Start Aug 25, 2010
286Trip End Jun 29, 2011
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But today, I was surprised not that I understood the driver who took me to Auchan, but that he asked questions that I understood. Really, all he asked was what I planned to buy at Auchan. I told him I planned to buy food, but I couldn't elaborate because I didn't have the vocabulary. Instead, I pulled out my grocery list. I anticipated that the driver wouldn't be able to read it, but I was happy to let him know that I understood when he said "Wo kan bu dong," or, "I can't read [that]."
On the way back from Auchan, I had a driver who asked questions very slowly and clearly. Lucky for me, he asked all the typical questions, but I was relieved that he recognized that my Chinese wasn't good enough to converse at a normal pace, and that he slowed down accordingly.
The typical questions, for anyone who's wondering, are:
What are you doing in China?
Where are you from?
When did you get here?
When will you leave?
How much money does the university pay you per month?
How old are you?
Are you married?
My responses, when I can think of them quickly enough, are:
Wo shi ying wen lao shi, Jiangsu Daxue. (I'm an English teacher at Jiangsu University.)
Wo cong Meiguo lai. (I come from America.)
ba yue (August)
leo yue (June)
wu er ling ling Yuan (five two zero zero Yuan)
er shi si (24)
bu shi (no) or mei you (I don't have [a husband].)