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Aliens Unite!


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#1 Gran'piano

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 15:24

Looks as if quite a few members on here live in foreign regions. Does anyone else stumble over words or habits occasionally? Or find local customs -er unusual, or even idiotic. Are you ever told  'But everybody knows that!' when you ask a question or do something which, to the natives, is unexpected?

Turkey? for Christmas? But everybody eats Fondue Chinoise. Mincemeat? What's that? Of course all the boys wear smart blue trousers for Jugendfest. Everybody knows that.  (This, after you have just bought your son a pair of very smart beige trousers for said event).
And if you turn up at 11 minutes past the hour to catch a coach which leaves at 15 minutes past you are branded for life. There is actually a German word which translates as 'more than punctual'! Which means that a guest who arrives at your house 'überpünktlich' might well go straight home again if the door isn't immediately opened to her five minutes before the arranged meeting time. 

Anyone else?


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#2 chris13

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 15:29

Do I qualify as an alien ? Yorkshireman living in Lancashire.


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#3 Gran'piano

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 15:35

Different language. Different customs. Sure!


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#4 fsharpminor

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 16:12

Do I qualify as an alien ? Yorkshireman living in Lancashire.

Well thats two of us Chris, though as you know I am Wirral !


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#5 hummingbird

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 16:13

In my book, anybody who doesn't have cheese with their Christmas cake is an alien!


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#6 chris13

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 16:18

In my book, anybody who doesn't have cheese with their Christmas cake is an alien!

Yes, but in my Yorkshire childhood home it had to be Cheshire.

 

The port and village of Heysham near Morecambe is pronounced He-sham by the locals and Haysham by people new to the area and those passing through.


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#7 Gran'piano

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 16:20

In my book, anybody who doesn't have cheese with their Christmas cake is an alien!


What is Christmas Cake?
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#8 chris13

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 16:55

It is a very rich fruit cake made of raisins, currants, glazed cherries, mixed peel, dark sugar and spices. Very little flour in comparison with sponge cakes and so could be described as quite dense. Found in shops covered in marzipan and white fondant icing usually made to look like a covering of snow. It is also a cake that needs time to mature so is baked a few months before Christmas.

 

Usually eaten when stomachs are already full to overflowing with Christmas dinner and Christmas pudding.

 

Anecdote. During our teenage years my brother and I went on exchange visits to our twin town in Germany. One of the lads that stayed with us wanted to take back to Germany a suitcase containing as many containers of glazed cherries that he could squeeze in. Obviously they were not available in Germany at that time. (It is probably better to use cherries in Kirsch or Black Forest Gateau....opinions please)


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#9 hummingbird

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 17:53

 

In my book, anybody who doesn't have cheese with their Christmas cake is an alien!


What is Christmas Cake?

 

 

As chris13 says, but in our family we prefer it plain with cheese, ie without the marzipan and icing.  Somebody in the family makes a batch of Christmas cakes and the unbaked cake mix is also yummy :D  We put a dash of rum or brandy in it as well.  Also as chris13 says, it's Cheshire cheese for us too.


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#10 Misterioso

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 18:37

The alcohol level in our Christmas cake gets constantly topped up between baking it and eating it. It's quite alcofrolic by Christmas.

 

Do I count as an alien, as a Sassenach in Scotland? When we first moved here, I used to get bewildered by people asking me if I was "going for my messages". I also had to get used to Silent Sabbaths, and Stornoway time, which is always 5 minutes after the scheduled start time of an event. And please don't get me started on local funerals.... :blink:


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#11 Gran'piano

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 18:40

Welcome to the club.
Folk here are very surprised when I say that in "real" English, aliens are not necessarily visitors from outer space.
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#12 fsharpminor

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 20:12

 

In my book, anybody who doesn't have cheese with their Christmas cake is an alien!

Yes, but in my Yorkshire childhood home it had to be Cheshire.

 

The port and village of Heysham near Morecambe is pronounced He-sham by the locals and Haysham by people new to the area and those passing through.

 

No No, it has to be Wensleydale !!  You can also have it with apple pie.


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#13 chris13

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 22:35

 

 

In my book, anybody who doesn't have cheese with their Christmas cake is an alien!


What is Christmas Cake?

 

 

As chris13 says, but in our family we prefer it plain with cheese, ie without the marzipan and icing.  Somebody in the family makes a batch of Christmas cakes and the unbaked cake mix is also yummy :D  We put a dash of rum or brandy in it as well.  Also as chris13 says, it's Cheshire cheese for us too.

 

I wasn't being terribly clear.....our household didn't cover with marzipan or icing. Just had it plain with Cheshire cheese. It wasn't until I married that I discovered they could be covered. (Wife is from Oxfordshire).


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#14 chris13

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 22:42

Wife tells me she would use royal icing rather than fondant. I'm not sure what the difference is. One of my specialities is to make the brandy butter on Christmas day morning. I start adding brandy very slowly and keep tasting. Because it takes time for the brandy taste to develop I end up adding too much and become somewhat giddy by the end.


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#15 dorfmouse

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 23:09

I have trained my previously überpünktlich German friends to a more Irish idea of social timekeeping. Probably the sight of me running to answer the doorbell 15 minutes before the agreed time hastily draped in a towel and dripping from the shower got the message across!
After twenty years I still haven't got used to shaking everyone's hands at choir or other social gatherings. (Considered poor manners not to.) I seem to get away with a vague queenlike wave!
Some of my friends enjoy using my early language gaffes such as asking for Leistungswasser (performance water) instead of Leitungswasser (tap water) or Leberkuchen (liver cakes) instead of Lebkuchen (chocolate ginger cakes). Mind you, I never outdid another alien who turned up at the Landratsamt, the local council offices, with a black bag of washing, having followed signs to what she thought was the Launderette ...
As for my alien mince pies, these are guzzled by everyone I introduce them to, which reminds me I must get on and make several batches for friends and music teachers. Even made the mince myself as it's not easily found here.
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