I’m sorry, could you repeat that?

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Wanting to be understood is on most people’s wish lists
. I, for one have learned first hand what this really entails. Let me explain
. What you hear is not always what the person means. Do you get where I’m going with this? Moving to Austria, 9 years ago and wanting to integrate as soon as possible was first on my to-do-list. Now, how does one do this? Join a sports club! Yes, and that’s what I did. Playing ice-hockey. Now, this was a challenge, playing with young sporty university students who spoke Carinthian and Styrian. Enough said, wow! I could not make head or tail of it… Hearing things on ice that I’d never heard before like,

bist du deppert?’
(because I actually thought that I understood this question)  to which I happily replied,

no, I’m Lenka’!

Their reaction was one of deep confusion. As was mine.
Lesson learned: So, if you don’t really understand a question, ask, ‘I’m sorry, what do you mean?’ instead of, ‘could you repeat that’.

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