I got called in to work today to cover the paint department. I only got a little bit of paint on my face and hands and clothes, so I think I did good. ;-)
Interestingly, there was a nice older latino couple who came in to buy 5 gallons of stain. They spoke broken english, but there was a communication problem. They were wanting to know what the difference was in the different grades of stain. The better one had a 8 year warranty, the next down had a 6 year, and the cheap crap had a 2 year warranty. My Spanish skills are next to nil, but I did use a sum total of 3 spanish words. I said
"Ocho a~nos" while pointing to the 8 year stain, and did likewise for the next one down.
No big deal, right? What was interesting was the increase in friendliness the couple displayed after I used extremely basic Spanish. They were all smiles and acted tickled. It's amazing how much we identify with languages. I try to imagine how I would feel going to a foreign country and having someone speak a couple of words of English, but I can't quite picture it.
Any similar experiences?