An American gives directions in Cornwall

Something notable happened the other day: A guy in a landscaping van stopped while I was walking the dog and asked for directions, and even though he heard my accent (yeah, well, how could he not hear it?), he drove in the direction I suggested.

I should mark the date on my calendar so I can celebrate it next year.

 

32 thoughts on “An American gives directions in Cornwall

  1. It works for gender bias as well. Folks looking for directions at the hotel desk would always go to the male employees first, who would then turn to me for clarification. It always made me smile. ☺ Van

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  2. Then again there’s my recent experience of telling a guy to head East on the interstate to get to Arizona (from California) in order to get cheaper gas. Turns out I was wrong… still trying to figure that one out.

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  3. This made me laugh. We seem to get asked directions all the time when we’re in England–must be the old farts in hats thing. Last time we’d landed that morning and set off to explore Hampstead Heath. (We find it works best if we just hit the ground running when we fly at night and then collapse into bed early the next evening.) We’d no sooner entered the heath than some woman, possibly German, asked us for directions. Couldn’t help her. But later, when a young London couple asked us, we were ready as we’d just studied the map.

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  4. On the other side of the…coin! Here in Africa beware of asking how far a place is – you will invariably be told it’s close-by! Loosely translated that could be 12km or 120km! And also beware, if you are lost, of taking the guy up in your car for him to show you the way (yes, people do offer!) because he will take you via his own home and mostly once there just direct you the rest of the way!

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  5. I once had an instance where I stopped and asked directions. They were completely wrong. Another time in NYC and driving an 18 wheeler, I asked directions and the guy hopped on my running board and offered to steer me to the right place. As the neighborhoods became increasingly shabby, I realized that he was steering me into a hijacking. I told him to get off and had to threaten him to make him do so.

    I will still ask for directions, but of an employee in a store.

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    • I grew up in New York, and for some reason we always told each other that New Yorkers would never admit it if they didn’t know where something was–they’d just give you directions anyway. I haven’t a clue if that’s true, because I can’t remember anyone there ever giving me bad directions. In fact, I can’t remember ever having asked.

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