Rural Newfoundlanders speak with accents, dialects, and expressions that can be difficult for outsiders to understand. When I was befriending my neighbour, Gertie, I always said hello, and asked how she was doing. She replied : ‘Oh, maid, I finds me back.’
Because I didn’t know what that meant, I would smile, and change the subject. Then I asked another friend, Marie, what Gertie means when she says she finds her back. Marie explained that that means Gertie has a sore back. Similarly, if John says he finds his foot, that means his foot hurts.
I have learned, from living here, that to become expert communicators, we need to ask for clarification when we don’t understand something.
If I had asked for clarification, I could have been more sympathetic to Gertie. May the Lord grant us the grace to always ask for clarification when we don’t understand something.