When we were new in Canada and discovering our new city of Toronto, finding our way around town, I took a great interest in learning street names.
I have lived in different parts of the world before moving to Canada and have always believed that nothing makes you feel at home like knowing where you are – there are people who look perpetually lost because they only go from point A to point B and don’t look at all the places they pass in between.
But knowing names of streets as they are written on street signs and knowing how to pronounce them are two different things, as I learnt.
One day, I’d been to Strachan on some work and was telling my friend Samar about it when he corrected me saying it was pronounced Strawn, not Stra-chan, as I had pronounced it.
A few days later, he corrected me again. Is-lington, no I-lington.
“That’s weird,” I said, a little miffed. “How is one supposed to know that? After all, island is pronounced i-land...”
Realizing that I was perhaps upset at being caught out as a newbie, Samar hastened to reassure me. “All of us have made similar mistakes. I didn’t know Stephen was pronounced as Steven and not Ste-fen!” he said.
I resisted the temptation to crow that I knew how to pronounce Stephen, after all he had pointed me in the right direction where road names were concerned!
– Divya Chaturvedi
What’s your story? Every newcomer, no matter how savvy or where he or she comes from, has a Fresh Off the Plane (FOP) story to share about their early days in Canada. Do you want to share your story? E-mail it to us at email@example.com.Posted: Apr 3, 2017