Multilingual & Multicultural
Welcome, Willkommen, Bienvenidos, Bienvenue, Benvenuto, Bem-Vindos, へようこそ, Selamat Datang.
Lembeh Resort and [email protected] are very fortunate to have an international team. Did you know our staff speaks English, German, Portuguese, Spanish, French, Italian, Japanese and Indonesian?!!!
Miguel and Ana, our resort managers, are both Portguese. They also learned French and English in school. Most Portuguese also speak “Portuñol” but after living in Mexico for 3 years they can actually speak Spanish too. Miguel speaks conversational Indonesian and is always willing to try to communicate in any language, even if that means inventing new words. Ana would love to learn Italian but ahimè, for now she can only understand it.
Japanese guests no need to worry (shinpai nai); Lisa and Naomi in the dive center and Ralfi from the front office, learnt Japanese at University. They are always looking for opportunities to practice their skills.
Our Photo Pro Sascha Janson comes from a wine-making region of Germany called the “Pfalz” where they have their own special dialect, so distinct from High German that Germans from other regions have a hard time understanding it. One German backpacker, meeting Sascha during his early days in Thailand and hearing him attempt to speak High German, asked, “Are you speaking French?”, much to Sascha’s dismay. After leaving Germany to become a full-time dive instructor in Thailand, he decided at the ripe old age of 30 to learn English and has since mastered the language to the extent that he can beat just about any native English-speaker at Scrabble! After leaving Thailand (where he failed miserably at learning Thai – he couldn’t even buy a ferry ticket to the island he lived on without having to repeat the name over and over again) he helped build a resort on a remote island in Raja Ampat and by necessity, picked up the Indonesian language skills necessary for a building site. So he could say things like “give me that philips screwdriver” but not “My name is Sascha” in Indonesian, much to the amusement of the locals. So you could say Sascha speaks Pfälzisch, German, English and ‘handyman Indonesian’!
Lauren Siba is a native English speaker and decided to learn Italian at the age of 30. She especially found it fun learning local proverbs – one of her favorites is “uno che vuole la botta piena e la moglie ubriaca”, which is their equivalent of our expression, “someone who wants their cake and to eat it too”, and literally translated, means “someone who wants their wine cask full and their wife drunk”! After learning Italian, Lauren decided to try to be a more patriotic Canadian and learn French, and she is currently trying (rather unsuccessfully!) to decipher the mysteries of the local dialect known as ‘Manadonese’ and the even stranger ‘sub-dialect’, Indonesian text-speak language on Facebook.
Kristine is also a native English speaker and having worked in the U.S. Virgin Islands has also learned Western Carib, “soon come” has come in very handy in Indonesia, where they say “tunggu sebentar”. Which really means – it will happen when it happens. She is known to speak conversational Indonesian with the locals and she really has those hand signals down.
Make sure you make them practice their skills on your next visit