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Old 03-14-2019, 03:27 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
12,223 posts, read 12,487,684 times
Reputation: 19369

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Quote:
Originally Posted by eureka1 View Post
I guess it's what you bring to it. I found the people of Montreal and in France to be very friendly and helpful. NYC too.
I arrived on the Left Bank in Paris by train in the first day of a wretched case of the flu. I walked down the street to the first hotel I found and asked for a room. They only had a room for one night, because it was reserved for the next night. I hit a local drug store for a bottle of codeine cough syrup that would stone and elephant, took a double dose and passed out. They checked on me the next morning and brought juice and bottled water to my room. I slept until noon, and then went to the desk to ask when I had to be out.

"Don't worry about it."

In the early evening, I went out to find some food. As I passed the desk, there was a very distressed couple whose reservations had gotten "lost." The manager was on the phone looking for alternate accommodations for them.

I was sick. I needed shelter. They made the human choice, not the contractual choice. I was grateful. I left a big tip when I checked out.

The rest of Paris was great fun. I was traveling solo, and spoke no French at all. It was not a handicap. Since I was accessible, I got invited to a couple of parties, had good times in bistros and bars, and found the French to be both personable and friendly. So much for the "mean Paris" mythology. It's a beautiful city. I had similar experiences in the countryside, collecting many good stories of the people I met. One guy spent an hour teaching me to count in French. It was the most useful gift he could have given me.

Americans in groups are really obnoxious. They are inaccessible for communication. If you want to make friends while traveling, travel alone.
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Old 03-14-2019, 03:29 PM
 
Location: Seattle
5,745 posts, read 4,553,943 times
Reputation: 3434
Some other countries I've backpacked in where I've felt immense kindness are Bangladesh, Madagascar, Guyana and Ethiopia.
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Old 03-14-2019, 03:41 PM
 
38,113 posts, read 14,885,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homesinseattle View Post
Some other countries I've backpacked in where I've felt immense kindness are Bangladesh, Madagascar, Guyana and Ethiopia.
Add Kenya to the list for me.
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Old 03-14-2019, 03:46 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,937 posts, read 27,326,583 times
Reputation: 8602
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotHereQuickAsICould View Post
Could be. I didn't see that, and that certainly wasn't the case with the group I was with. No one was angry, shouting, or in any way belligerent. We were using our high school French, and our phrase books, attempting to discuss things with conference colleagues, order meals, purchase admission tickets, etc.

It's been several decades and I can still recall how unfriendly everyone was. On the flight home, we were all wondering why they they invited us.

Your explanation certainly doesn't explain the arrogant, rude behavior of FCs in Florida.
You see to have, um... "issues" with Montreal, Quebec, French Canadians, etc.


I've checked some of your other posts and you've mentioned this before.


One of the things you often mention is language problems at the university conference you were invited to speak at, but you've noted that the conference was at McGill University - which is an *English* language institution. So how could you possibly have had problems with French only at an institution that operates in English?


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Old 03-14-2019, 06:49 PM
 
38,113 posts, read 14,885,535 times
Reputation: 24541
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
You see to have, um... "issues" with Montreal, Quebec, French Canadians, etc.


I've checked some of your other posts and you've mentioned this before.


One of the things you often mention is language problems at the university conference you were invited to speak at, but you've noted that the conference was at McGill University - which is an *English* language institution. So how could you possibly have had problems with French only at an institution that operates in English?


I can understand you wanting to defend your fellow FCs, but I'm telling you my experience of them was that they were rude as hell.

The conference was definitely not in English. Everyone had headphones. Presentations by French Canadians were in French. During the presentations by those of us who spoke English, the FC audience was all wearing headphones for the translation. During the shared meals, the FCs spoke French.

However, from what we could tell, nearly everyone spoke English. If they had a question to ask after the session when the translators were no longer an option, they asked in English.

Then there were the questions at the meals about how it felt to have everyone speak a language we couldn't understand. Asked in English, of course.

I've met friendly people all world. Did not run across any of them in Montreal.

Perhaps if our paths had crossed, my experience would have been different.

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Old 03-14-2019, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,937 posts, read 27,326,583 times
Reputation: 8602
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotHereQuickAsICould View Post
I can understand you wanting to defend your fellow FCs, but I'm telling you my experience of them was that they were rude as hell.

The conference was definitely not in English. Everyone had headphones. Presentations by French Canadians were in French. During the presentations by those of us who spoke English, the FC audience was all wearing headphones for the translation. During the shared meals, the FCs spoke French.

However, from what we could tell, nearly everyone spoke English. If they had a question to ask after the session when the translators were no longer an option, they asked in English.

Then there were the questions at the meals about how it felt to have everyone speak a language we couldn't understand. Asked in English, of course.

I've met friendly people all world. Did not run across any of them in Montreal.

Perhaps if our paths had crossed, my experience would have been different.

I do not think this place is perfect and am not being defensive.

I just find this hard to believe.

Especially at McGill.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:57 PM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
13,236 posts, read 24,407,950 times
Reputation: 13004
I watched this many years ago and thought the dynamic was interesting (re: Montreal/English/etc), as are some of the comments on the video.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVD3TN-vCLk
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Old 03-14-2019, 09:03 PM
 
25,972 posts, read 32,970,649 times
Reputation: 32158
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburban_Guy View Post
At times there are articles and discussion threads on the 'friendliest' places you've ever visited.

In all my travels internationally and in parts of the U.S., I don't think any place has struck me as being particularly friendly. I've been to Japan, Thailand, Germany, Mexico, and other places, and I haven't experienced anyone going out of their way to be nice to me.

Anyone else?
Paris. I met so many nice people there. Japan also, lots of very kind people. London, not so much.
Boston? RUDE. San Francisco? Rude PLUS entitled.

No where else really was memorable as far as the people being one extreme or the other.
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Old 03-14-2019, 09:07 PM
 
Location: Montreal > Quebec > Canada
476 posts, read 426,150 times
Reputation: 263
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotHereQuickAsICould View Post
During the presentations by those of us who spoke English, the FC audience was all wearing headphones for the translation. During the shared meals, the FCs spoke French.

However, from what we could tell, nearly everyone spoke English. If they had a question to ask after the session when the translators were no longer an option, they asked in English.
If they used the headphones to get the French translation, their English wasn’t very good. No one use these things just for fun or to prove a point.
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Old 03-15-2019, 12:34 AM
 
14,257 posts, read 23,974,521 times
Reputation: 20048
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post


One of the things you often mention is language problems at the university conference you were invited to speak at, but you've noted that the conference was at McGill University - which is an *English* language institution. So how could you possibly have had problems with French only at an institution that operates in English?

I brought up McGill University, NOT the OP. McGill is an English oasis is a sea of Francophones.
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