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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Can You Speak Wyoming?

     Travel can be such a life enhancing experience. It doesn't really matter where you travel, you will always learn something. I've been fortunate to have had the opportunity to travel to quite a bit of the United States, also to Australia, New Zealand and a number of countries in Europe. All have been a wonderful learning experience and I hope to do more.

A trip to Italy (2006) Florence 

Trevi fountain - Rome

A trip to Greece (2008)

     I've always been interested in history. I love reading books about historical subjects both fiction and nonfiction. I find it interesting to learn about other cultures. It's fascinating to see how people do things in other countries or even in other parts of the U.S. Another way, besides travel, I've been able to learn about other cultures has been hosting foreign exchange students. When our children were growing up we had several: two from Germany, one from Switzerland, one from France. This experience was of benefit to the whole family. 

A trip to Costa Rica (2011)

     A couple years ago we had the opportunity to have a young lady from Japan stay with us. We had a wonderful time learning and laughing with Mariko. Although she is now back in Japan we keep in touch and she is considered part of our family. She calls us her American parents. Our grandson hit it off with Mariko and they became great friends.

Rex with Mariko and another good friend, from So. Korea, Taesub 

     Whenever Rex came to our house he would want to hang out with her if she was home. One day while they were together Mariko was watching a video on her computer. It was in Japanese. She explained to Rex that they were speaking Japanese, like he speaks English. He replied, "No I don't speak English, I'm not from England. I speak Wyoming".  They have a family friend who is from England and of course speaks with a British accent. So I guess that's his idea of English. 

    Although Rex hasn't been out of the U.S. yet, he has been to a number of states. He's visited: California, Montana, South Dakota, Kentucky, Louisiana and Florida. He was able to communicate very well with the inhabitants of those states. As he gets older he will have a better understanding of how Wyoming is a part of a larger United States. And that the U.S. is part of an even larger world. But he's already had the opportunity to meet people from many other places. And perhaps learn that although the world can seem large we have more in common then we realize. So what language do you speak?

A thought to ponder: Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer.

Participating: Share Your CupNo Rules WeekendShare the JoyGrand Social


  1. The "I speak Wyoming" comment made me laugh. Travel can certainly be a great experience. And it's true, after spending many years abroad, when I am back in my native Michigan, people ask where my accent is from because I my own English has evolved after so much time spent in other countries!

    1. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm glad you got a laugh. Children have a unique way of looking at the world, it's always interesting. How nice for you to have been able to experience living in other countries. And now living in China. What a great adventure for you and your husband.

  2. You know, Rex is actually onto something. I've lived in a lot of states and visited nearly all of the rest of them, but in my experience, Wyoming is the only one where when someone says you've got a "nice outfit," they don't mean your clothes! :-)

    I can remember wanting to travel abroad at a very young age. If only my dad had been in the Navy or AF instead of the Marines! The only time he was stationed outside the US was Okinawa (when he was single) and 2x in Viet Nam (obviously, an "unaccompanied" tour!) So I only made it to Canada and Mexico till I was 34, when I finally got to England. So meanwhile, I started collecting pen pals from all over the world when I was in junior high, and kept in touch with some well past college (including Karena from the former GDR who visited us twice with her family when we lived in Big Horn). That was a really fun way to learn about other cultures, places, and daily lives - but was still no match for actually visiting those places! The only place you mention or show here that I've also been to is Costa Rica. So one of these days when we get to spend some quality time together, I/we want to hear more (and see more photos) of some of your travels! (Especially Florence, you lucky, lucky devil!)

    I think it's great that you hosted all those foreign exchange students. I could never convince my parents to do that, try as I might (or let me study abroad myself, also try as I might!) Though we did host "his Lordship" Iain (he of the New Year's Day phone calls), a complete stranger at the time, when I was 17 and he was a 21-year old British Army lieutenant on his first trip to the US, becoming life-long friends in the process.

    I hope you'll get to see Mariko again, and am sure Rex has a lot more travels in his future!

    1. I think because the US is so large each area has developed certain speech idiosyncrasies. I imagine American english can be a little difficult for those coming from a foreign country. I know we had to explain certain turn of phrases to our exchange students.

      Like you I only made it to Canada & Mexico until I was older. I was in my 50's when I made my first European trip. I have albums of photos of all my trips. The first several trips were before digital, so all the photos I took were printed. Digital has helped in storing photos, a CD takes up less room then an album. But I did make books on Shutterfly of my last two trips (Greece, Costa Rica). But with those I picked my favorite pictures and saved the rest on disc. I would love to share them, we will get together for a picture fest.

      Mariko would very much like us to come to Japan. Al has been when he was in the Navy. My friend Diane and I have talked about it, she also is friends with Mariko. So maybe one day soon.