Sunday, June 8, 2008

The English Language

Some say that one great connection between the United States and the United Kingdom is that we share a common language. Don't take that for granted. English spoken in Britain can at times be very different from American English, and the differences across Britain are sometimes extreme (far more than the minor differences we see in different parts of the U.S..

Here is a list of common language and cultural things to keep in mind:

In America we say "bathroom" or "restroom." In England they say "toilet" or sometimes "loo" (if you ask for a restroom you a liable to get an old lady asking if you want to lie down, it happened to me once.)

In America we say "thank you." In England you often hear "cheers" in place of this.

British money is in pounds (the symbol is £), but like our money which is broken down into cents, British money is broken down into pence (often abbreviated "p" when spoken and written the same way, ie 50p). The British will often say something like "five pounds fifty" which is £5.50. Pence coins come in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 pieces. Pounds come in 1 and 2 pound coins and 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 pound notes. A slang term for pounds is the word "quid," similar to "bucks" in American (10 quid is the same as 10 pounds). Remember, one pound currently equals about two dollars (see the exchange rate calculator to the right.)

Also, despite being the home of English measuring units like we use in America (mile, pounds, ounces, inches, etc.), most items you see in England will be in metric units due to their membership in the European Union. Be aware of this when buying items, looking at distances or reading temperature (it is usually in Celsius instead of Fahrenheit).

That being said, the ten day weather forecast with tempertures in Fahrenheit is as follows (looks pretty good!):
Wed Jun 11 - T-Showers 70°/54° F
Thu Jun 12 - Partly Cloudy 64°/53° F
Fri Jun 13 - Mostly Cloudy 64°/51° F
Sat Jun 14 - Partly Cloudy 61°/50° F
Sun Jun 15 - Light Rain 63°/50° F
Mon Jun 16 - Mostly Cloudy 66°/52° F
Tue Jun 17 - Partly Cloudy 69°/55° F

1 comment:

Pat's Grandma said...

Hi Patrick,
Glad to see you up front in group shots and SMILING! You must be having a wonderful time, can't wait to see the photos.
Grandma I