I got into a conversation with my son today regarding bad travel behavior.
He mentioned an incident where some crazy, self centered tourists carved their names into an important monument in Rome. They were rightfully arrested for destroying historical property. I ask, why wouldn’t someone know that was wrong before they did the deed?
I’ve experienced American’s getting irritated when they couldn’t understand someone speaking a language other than English. Their voices get louder and louder, as if the person was deaf. I’ve also seen American’s, first ask, “Do you speak English?”
It’s better just to try asking first in English, assuming they speak it, and then when finding out they don’t speak English, try another method, such as pantomime, point to a translation dictionary, or a map. Do this while smiling and appreciating their efforts.
I once had a great time with a hotel maid in Turkey who asked me something that I didn’t understand so I got out my computer and asked her what she wanted and had it translated right then and there. We passed the laptop back and forth and ended up laughing. It was enjoyable experience for both of us.