I was watching something on TV this morning with an American guy travelling around Taiwan, when I started watching he was taking a Taxi to Taipei Railway Station, chatting to the driver in English, buying a ticket to Keelung in English, chatting to the guy next to him on the train in English, (All these people called it Keelung not Jilong), went to the night market where he bought stuff in English. Then he went to a beach. Basically, everyone he spoke to, spoke English. The whole programme was about how easy it is to get around the Taipei area in just English, how how visitor-friendly Taipei is. Any thoughts on how realistic this is ? That hasn’t really been my experience.
Maybe, but try getting around without Chinese outside of cozy Taipei. Heh heh. Yeah, go on kid, try it. See how far you get. Heh. Heh heh heh.
I say he was either very very lucky or it was set up.
It might be true in Taipei City but def. not in Taipei County or so. I am not trying to say how bad Taiwanese English are but where I work, which is near JiLong (KeeLong). Most of my co-workers aren’t good with English, can’t even hold a simple conversation. So I would assume the whole thing was set-up.
If that is true, then try speaking English in Japan, definitly worse!!
Set-up for sure, BUT could have found an Englsih speaking taxi driver by waving down a few and asking “do you speak English?”. Could have bought the ticket to Jilong in English by going to the service counter and asking. Could have wlaked the carriage looking for an English speaker easily enough etc. In Taipei you can probably always find an English speaker to help you if you look around.
However, he wouldn’t have been able to read the train timetable, see from the display in the trrain station when the trains were leaving, buy a ticket form the auto ticket machines or find his way to the right platform without asking people for help. Nor would he have had a rats chance of catching a bus in Jilong or finding his way to the beach form there, without having a lot of help.
How come no one think I can speak English and ask me for help?
I saw this poor girl when my brother and I went to night market, she needed someone help her in English, so my bro pushed me to her and she just looked at me and passed me to ask other people :?
[quote=“scoffeecats”] How come no one think I can speak English and ask me for help?
I saw this poor girl when my brother and I went to night market, she needed someone help her in English, so my bro pushed me to her and she just looked at me and passed me to ask other people :? :|[/quote]
could it be because girls in Southern Taiwan are shy?? Or would it be because you are asain?? Could be both…
Or is it because she though you were trying to pick up on her??
~_~" I think the reason is I look like a kid
don’t worry, old women in Taiwan like Kids…
Of course it was staged, I assume it was a TV program and not the news right?
I had the same thought about the “Lonely Planet” programme on TV. Ian Wright gets himself around any country with his fluent Estuary Englsh, and monolingual Justine Shapiro does all right, too. I guess having a TV production team with you helps a lot.
I guess set up might be involved, but there are, indeed, many English speakers (Taiwanese) around you if you “talk” to them.
As for Keelong or Jilong… now you are involved the ugly politics. The central and local government just don’t seem to agree on which spelling system is to use…???###@@@
What is your standard of “friendly”?
Certainly it depends on who you ask. Students, I have found, can respond to simple queries, while older folk can be very hit or miss.
And it depends on what you need to accomplish.
“Where can I buy a ticket?” is different from “I think my clutch cable is frayed, can you check?”
i saw that program too. Look, TV is TV, it is not reality. They do pre production first, scout for locations, everything was arranged beforehand, but they make it look like real life reality. No way. Never trust anything you see on TV, unless it is pure unadulterated LIVE TV SNG like.
Especially here in Taiwan, but anywhere. TV is not reality. Of course the entire show was scripted and set up beforehand. Next question please.
It is a good question, but the TV show, face it, was fixed. Entertainment. Not reality.
“Jilong” is the same in hanyu pinyin and tongyong pinyin, so the spelling of the city’s name should be an easy call. Nonetheless, the last time I checked, the central gummit’s official line was that it should be spelled K-e-e-l-u-n-g; this is a stupid policy, and I don’t expect it to endure. (The K spelling and its resulting “key lung” mispronunciation is a pet peeve of mine.)
In Taipei, which has been good about putting up correct romanization on its street signs, there was some discussion about whether to spell Jilong Road with the J or “traditional” K spelling. Initially, the K spelling was kept, under the logic that otherwise foreigners might not know the street name was related to the city name. I, however, argued that the J spelling is necessary for people to know the correct pronunciation, which as a practical matter is far more important than duplicating a quirky, annoying, irrational spelling used elsewhere.
The city looks to have switched to the regular “Jilong” spelling, at least from what I’ve been seeing on maps and MRT signs. I’m not around that part of town much, though, and so would appreciate hearing what’s currently used on the street signs themselves.
[quote]I’m not around that part of town much, though, and so would appreciate hearing what’s currently used on the street signs themselves.
Why, both spellings are used, of course. But you knew that already, I’m sure.
Why, both spellings are used, of course. [/quote]
Just two? They’re improving!