So I was talking to one of my friends the other day and she asked me this question:
“Why do Japanese people speak to foreigners in Engrish,
even when we talk to them in Japanese? Why?”
Of course not all Japanese people respond like that. They’re usually trying to be nice,
but it seems like some of them believe that they HAVE to speak English to foreigners,
even though they don’t really know how to speak English,
even though they [foreigners] talk to them in Japanese.
Then that reminded me of my workmate when I was working at a convenience store.
One day when I was dealing with the customers at the counter,
a foreign woman came to the counter and asked me workmate how to get to the closest
post office, in Japanese.
And my workmate replied in Japanese-English.
So apparently this foreign woman was having a hard time understanding what my workmate said.
That’s “English.” At the time I was in high school and I’m not going to lie,
my English was worse than hers.
just because you don’t look Asian,
even if you talk to them in Japanese, some people will still reply to you in English
Some will be uncomfortable if you do not speak to them in Japanese.
And some will be happy because they have been going to so-called English conversation
schools and preparing for the day when a foreigner would come and talk to them in English.
But if you want Japanese people to speak to you in Japanese, you can just always ask them.
If that foreign woman asked my workmate to speak to her in Japanese,
maybe she could find the post office.
Unfortunately she left the store before I talked to her.
I hope she found the post office.
So, even if you speak to Japanese people in Japanese and they speak to you back in English
before you make them like:
Just ask them to talk to you in Japanese. That’s it!
Oh, by the way, she can speak English really well now.