Wednesday, April 11, 2012

the people you meet

SB went downstairs to buy more eggs and didn't return for almost an hour.  "Sorry, I got side tracked," he told me when he returned.  As he was passing the tram stop he saw a white couple with a map who appeared to be unsuccessfully asking for directions from a Chinese man.  "May I help you?" he asked them as the Chinese man fled.  The couple turned toward him.  "We are deaf."

Oh.  Then the woman asked him for directions to the cemetery.  Ah.  She could read lips.  He tried to explain the way but he tends to pack in waaaay to much information (probably went off on a tangent about the Parsis and war memorials) so after receiving a few bemused looks he decided to personally escort them.  The woman spoke to SB and then signed to her companion, who didn't seem to read lips or speak, so that they could all be in the conversation.  They are from Austria (SB said that the woman's English had a slight German accent).  Bless their hearts, I told SB; I am impressed when anyone decides to travel to a foreign country on their own so two deaf people doing so seems very brave.  I'll be sure to mention them to my friend Melissa, who has barely traveled outside of Florida and has never owned a passport.

I wish that I had met them.  I have rudimentary ASL and wonder what sign language they used.  I suppose that an Austrian deaf woman who can speak English probably knows a few different sign languages, including ASL.  How lucky for SB to have met such interesting people at the beginning of the day.

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