Assumed knowledge & the next big challenge: learning French

In Archive by Fredy Ore

Being new to the UK and also the european community, I am finding that my short stay here so far, has introduced both a huge list of immediate challenges, such as assumed (if not presumed) knowledge of the most basic things, as well as some longer challenges (and goals)…

To give you an example, the other week, I found that the emergency numbers here in the UK are different from those of Australia. Emergency is “999” in the UK. Who would of thought???! In Australia, emergency is assumed as “000” for land lines and to perhaps a few, “112” for mobiles.

It wasn’t till I was out with friends at a local UPA meet that, I was told that the reason for triple 9, was due to the way we used telephones decades ago (assumed knowledge).

The number “9” in those old rotating dial phones from way back, had the number “9” as the very last number on the rotary dial in those pulse phones. Hence “999” was chosen (here in the UK) as the most unlikely number to be accidently dialed, because you would have to rotate the full semi circled dial of the “9”, three times. Cool huh?
Don’t ask me why 911 was chosen, or other numbers in your particular country, I’m sure there are other useful reasons? :)

Anyways, practically everything I do, use, touch, feel, eat, see and smell has a feeing of “new” to it here. It’s amazing, so, with this in mind, I decided to set myself a more longer term challenge & goal… to learn French.

With some of my best friends from France and all speaking French, I decided to do what the BBC recommends as a Fresh Start for 2005 – learn a language. :)