A language problem

Japanese Dreams, Gia Simetzberger

Size doesn’t matter, but communication does…

It costs me considerable effort to got to Japan. Not because of the costs or the distance or because of health issues… Just because  I am so tall. I am six feet tall and that is quite a lot for a woman. Especially when you are among women almost half your size.

I can imagine how strange it will be when I walk along the streets in Japan. Can you understand that I might regard this as a barrier?

Anyway. I decided to accept the dreadful facts and to compensate possible embarassing situations with a big smile.

Another problem arose, however, which I never had in mind. The language barrier.

The two of us have been corresponding in English for more than fourty years. In France we spoke a very simple French and English. But… In her latest mail Madoka confessed that she was worried. She would write in English here and then, but she has not spoken an English words for ages. She promised to catch up…

There are many Japan travel guides on YouTube and I watch them a lot. A nice guy explained that all Japanese learn English at school, but most of them cannot speak English afterwards. Oh, it is clear. My Madoka is no exception. This is a typical phenomenon.

Studying Japanese

I need to learn Japanese. Otherwise I would meet a lovely Japanese family and we couldn’t talk. Terrible! Of course, learning Japanese would have many good side effects, like brain train, cultural insights, a chance to read one or the other street sign and last, but not least being able for everyday conversation in Japanese, thus showing respect to the Japanese people.

About learning Japanese I will write some sentences in one of my next posts. All I want to say now is that I regret that I haven’t started learning three years ago! Autumn will be here in a glimpse. Too bad!

Language translator tool

Just when I thought my nights would stay sleepless because of studying and worrying, I  incidentally came upon a language translator tool that can save us in case we fail to communicate. The ULT, an abbreviation for Ultimate Language Translator. And – it’s free!

I downloaded the ULT App and – first try, German – Indonesian. Well, it works. And what about German – Japanese? Also there. First phrase: How are you. Where are you from? Hooray! We are saved. We are saved!! That’s the biggest Christmas present for me. For US!

Screenshot 2017-12-17 00.51.20


More soon.


My article about voice translator apps in German:





















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