November 9, 2010

No more Banana

When I was a young girl, my parents wanted to train us daughters to be independent, to be able to stand on our own feet in a world such as this. They knew that if we were not trained properly, we would be bullied and scorned by other unkind people. So they decided once and for all, we must learn... and it began with ordering our own food at the hawker centre *=_=*

"But ....Mum!! I cannot understand them. They are Chinese"

Mum then asked me, "If they are Chinese, what are you?"

"I am English", I said confidently.

Please, stop laughing. It actually wasn't me. It is 1 of my sister. *I swear*.. And it happen long time ago... I now know that I am a Chinese... and I'm proud of it... wait, I am Malaysian...yeah, and I'm proud of it too..

Anyway, I have a problem. As you can see...I'm a 'banana'. Nope, I'm not going through an identity crisis but more like a self-realisation crisis. It was never a problem when I was in Sunway. After all, in corporate, most people are expected to have at least basic knowledge of English.

*please ignore the ugly looking banana above

But now, I'm in retailing and manufacturing... and it's hard cos I meet all kinds of people.. And they speak different kind of languages particularly mandarin or Cantonese....

And I realised, I have a serious problem.. I thought of attending Mandarin classes but knew that it will be a waste of money as first-hand experience is always the best...So that's what I did... I started conversing with customers, suppliers, fellow colleagues in mix English, Malay, Mandarin and Cantonese.... and it was tough.. try using words like rubberized printing, cotton materials, size, shapes, colours, quantity, bags, pouches, hand phone accessories, embroidery, 1 inches, 5 inches... pheww!!! I'm learned more mandarin and Cantonese in the last couple of months as compared to my last couple of years.. but I believe my fellow colleagues kept laughing at me behind my back because she couldn't understand me at all... we need a translator once in a while *failed la me*... and I still sound like a white person...

But... I have improved...

I was at the bank... and there was this young girl at the table next to me... She was waiting for her new ATM card... After a while, I overheard their conversation... It sounded like chicken talking to a cat or is it a cat talking to an elephant... Whatever it is, it wasn't working.. The customer service executive is a Malay guy... She is a Chinese girl from China... And she could not understand or speak a word of English... My goodness!!! How can you go somewhere without understanding the language of the people there. She must be very brave... He tried explaining to her that she must change her password at the ATM machine after receiving her card and also how to log in to Maybank2u. Anyway, after awhile, the Malay guy turned to me and said, "Miss, can you help me translate?"...

Mua??? Translate? Not wanting to let my race down... I stepped into my newly appointed role...

And to cut the long story short... I DID IT!!!! Well, at least I think she did understand what I was telling her...*give myself a pat on the back*

So, I can now officially announce...  I am NOT a banana anymore!!!!

Now, can someone please tell me how to say "online banking", "ATM machine", "password", "website", "log in" in mandarin please?














4 comments:

Bluey Joyce said...

online banking = 网上银行 (wang shang yin hang)
ATM machine = 提款卡 (ti kuan ka)
password = 密码 (mi ma)
website = 网站 (wang zhan)
log in = 登入 (deng ru)

these are the proper chinese term.. :P

Bluey Joyce said...

Opps... ATM machine should be 提款机(ti kaun ji) instead of 提款卡 (ti kuan ka).

提款卡 (ti kuan ka) is ATM Card :P

Eunice said...

i love the banana picture of you =P hmmm... i wonder how would it look on the 10thkl website.....

Esther Chew said...

Joyce : Darn... That don't sound at all like what I told her.. Hopefully I did not tell her the wrong things :(

Eunice : Don't you dare =_=