Last week, one of doors to the shower cubicle had a post-it sign that said ”Shower not in use.” I thought that was a strange—but I figured that maybe the lock wasn’t working and so you need to use that post to indicate when it's in use or when it's not. But since it wasn’t the shower cubicle I normally use, I didn’t give it another thought. Until one day when I was using one of the sinks in that bathroom and a bathrobed-Brit dorm mate came in and groaned, “Oh no, not again!” and left with a sigh for the other bathroom. It was only then that it dawned on me that “Shower not in use” actually meant it was NOT WORKING.
Obviously, there’s "English"---and there’s English—and no two are the same (nor created equal as the Brits would insist, and I know from experience since they have observed loudly that I spoke American English--observed with an accusatory tone, I might add).
I’ve learned that…
A bonnet is not where a bee flies into but where men stick their heads into when they're fixing their cars.
When you go into a surgery, nobody will cut you open, they might just check your tongue and make you say, “aahh.”
You can have dinner at lunch time and have tea in the evening, and be quite full.
A rubber is the innocent eraser and not something that controls population growth.
A boot is not what you give people who are not performing well but its actually where you stick your luggage in (or in the case of the Mafia, dead people).
The first floor is on the second floor and the second floor is on the third floor.
Half nine is not 4.5 but 9:30--am/pm.
People walk on pavements not sidewalks, and so do their dogs.
Brit cars prefer petrol to gasoline.
A crèche is not something you eat but it’s where you put your baby if you have to go somewhere else.
There is no yellow color on their traffic lights, only amber.
Afters are what you look forward to when you've finished your main meal but when you are dining with the Queen you will have dessert instead.