Monday, May 5, 2008

A Foreign Language?

We are well here and so-o-o-o happy that spring appears to be here. The leaves are out and the flowers are to die for. All of the parks here make for a beautiful spring. You know when we first put in our mission papers, I was really worried about getting called to a country, like Argentina, where I would have to listen to everyone speaking a foreign language and not be able to speak it myself. Little did I know that we were getting sent to a place where they really do speak ALMOST a foreign language at times. I thought it would be fun today to give you some of those foreign language words that we are gradually starting to use ourselves. Here we go:
Tips and pips - turnips and potatoes,
Lorry - truck,
windscreen - windshield,
bonnet - hood of a car,
trousers - pants,
pants - underwear,
purse - wallet,
handbag - purse,
washing up liquid - dishsoap,
toilet - restroom,
cling film - Saran Wrap,
aliminium - aluminum,
torch - flashlight,
dental surgery - dentist office,
surgery - doctor's office,
fly tipping - no dumping garbage,
common or green - park,
hoover - vacuum,
boot - trunk of car,
at the end of the day - result,
tele - television,
sweets - candy,
digestives or biscuits - cookies,
motorway - freeway,
kebab - spit grilled lamb or chicken sandwich,
flick - movie,
washing powder - laundry detergent,
mobile - cell phone.
Not only is the vocabulary different, but the spellings of words are way different. They tend to put lots more letters in words than we do. For instance: favourite and colour. Also, most words that end in "er" here end in "re" such as theatre. I'm not sure who changed the English language through the years, but there are actually quite a few differences in the language from America to England. My mom always used to say that the English used the pure form of the language and we had altered it a lot. I think she would be surprised to hear how many of the uneducated people here in London speak. They leave out half of the letters when they pronounce words and run the words together so much that it is difficult to understand what they are saying. We do love it here and the history and appreciation for the OLD things is marvelous. They treasure the old architecture and traditions of their country. I am including a couple of pictures of magnificent buildings in downtown London, Westminister Cathedral and St. Paul's Cathedral. These are both beautiful pieces of architecture and amazing when you think of when they were built.
We do many different things. This past week we have built shelves and helped to organize a member's home, planted a garden for a member, fixed meals for the missionaries and prospective members, made visits, cleaned the church, burned old records at the church because the shredder does not work, fixed a leaky roof, prepared lessons, helped with YM and YW activities, attended Zone Conference, cleaned carpets at the church, mowed lawns and pulled weeds at the Stake Center, and attended missionary meetings to organize our "MEET THE MORMONS' open house which we will hold on May 18. We keep very busy and stay out of mischief almost all of the time, at least Kenneth does.
We hope all is well there. We think of you often and pray for your welfare. It is good to hear from you. The church is wonderful here, the members are great, and we feel the spirit here just like we did at home. I know that the Lord loves all of his children no matter where they live and no matter what they look like. It is great to be a part of this work!