Saturday, 5 September 2009


BATH not 'barth'

Continuing on from last weeks blog Snow Leopard has been loaded it is fully operational, without any visible glitches and all is as perfect as Apple claim it to be !

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Today we are awaiting the arrival of special visitors from that island that lies between us and the european continent, on that island four old nations live in comparative harmony. These particular folk are from England two will arrive this day and two more tomorrow, neither couple knowing the other. It will be interesting to see how they communicate and interact when they get together both having the same language.

The way in which the English speak English often denotes the class or the assumed class of the speaker, nowhere is this more apparent than in London and its outer areas where dialect is largely avoided by the professional classes and is a common form of snobbishness or so it seems to me.

I often wonder why people with good strong county accents feel the need to lose their dialect and conjoin with others in uttering a flat insipid style of speech that lacks vitality. Fortunately the displacement of dialect

rarely occurs with the people from Northern or Southwestern counties.

This past week I have been listening to the Beeb in order to attune my ears to hearing and deciphering English English, which is entirely different to that which is pronounced on this island. The most noticeable difference with the non dialect English is the addition of the R sound when using an A which sounds like AR for example Bath actually sounds like Barth !

They have been here, those non dialect English speakers, and after having had several drinks while sitting around the fire, their rich county accents have flowed out and warmed the atmosphere. Which makes me suspect that their adoption of the non dialect English in the first place stemmed from some sort of inhibition or insecurity.

I do though understand the need to fit in when moving to a different area or country. Fitting in is done by being considerate to others, using common sense by not forcing your ways on them or comparing the new place with your last abode. Otherwise an outspoken neighbour might tell you to return to whence you came.

Our accents do though change minimally and naturally as we unconsciously accept the different idioms of dialect of our new place of abode.

Strangely, every person that meets us hears different parts of our voice; in much the same way as each person recognises facial features differently too. For example, I once shaved off my beard. Some people noticed right away while others didn't notice at all and some did not even recognise me until I spoke.


  1. Hmm, this is odd. I thought I'd left a comment here, but it seems not to have saved. I've just dropped in out of curiosity to see who my new follower was on Skipper's Child. Now I'm intrigued by your blog! I'm guessing you live in Ireland, but grew up on a narrow boat? I' very curious to know more about what that was like! As you've probably realised, I'm writing a story (nearly finished) about a Dutch bargee's son and family. It's set against the background of my own partner's childhood. He grew up on a Dutch barge and travelled throughout Europe during his youth in the fifties and early sixties. I've always loved the stories of how they lived, but was amazed (like most people) to hear how boring it was for a child. When I learnt more, I understood. Anyway, thanks for coming by and I'll drop in now and then to see what you are doing. I like the eclectic feel your blog has!

  2. Dear VallyP,
    Thank you for your words and your world of inland boats. Just a small correction I did not grow up on a Narrow Boat, it is that those boats. They were my earliest experience of being afloat, from being a pre toddler to small boy.
    Waterborne vessels of all shapes and types have played a large part in my life.
    The sea in particular draws me to herself and at odd times I get the urge to drive 100 kms simply to acknowledge her power and beauty. The sight of her satisfies my inner person and I return home happy and content.


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