Two countries separated by a common language, by Sheila Deeth

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Fields mountains and houses covered in snow.

A post shared by Sheila Deeth (@sheiladeeth) on

I was walking on the green and saw this view. Suitably inspired, I suggested two friends go onto the green as well. They looked at me with that what in earth does she mean expression I’ve grown to accept as my due,  then agreed “Oh yes,  let’s walk on the greenway.”

Back in England the green, as in village green, is that common area of grass where people congregate,  play cricket, or maybe read books on benches while watching the ducks. But here,  it seems,  it’s the place where people play golf …

… which explains a curious  mystery I’d been trying to solve. How did I,  from a family where no one plays golf,  end up on so many golfing email lists? Perhaps some Internet spying machine saw me use the word green on Facebook,  Twitter and in blog posts. But why and how were they looking?

And who else is looking?

And who else is so completely mistaken about me?

‘Tis a strange new world, even more so when you wander into that gap where two nations are separated by a common language.

Sheila Deeth is an English American author,  with two novels,  Divide by Zero and Infinite Sum, published by Indigo Sea Press.


Filed under writing

6 responses to “Two countries separated by a common language, by Sheila Deeth

  1. When Americans say ‘my back yard’, I imagine some small concrete space with no greenery. What I’ve come to learn is that they’re talking about their gardens!

  2. Reblogged this on Stevie Turner, Indie Author. and commented:
    Ha ha, just had to re-blog this one from Sheila Deeth – a ‘lost in translation’ moment!

  3. Oh, yes, Sheila. I was only seventeen on my first trip to the UK and remember being quite surprised several times by our language similarities/differences. I remember asking for the front desk lady at a B&B for a wake-up call, and all was going well until she said, “I’d be glad to knock you up at seven.” Excuse me?

  4. We have actually adopted a few phrases from our kids’ early years because they seemed more appropriate than the originals! A helicopter is now a “hopty-clopter” and humpty dumpty is “hunky dunky” in our house. Nice little observation, Sheila!

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