My parents often host Japanese exchange students for home stay experiences associated with the University of Melbourne. We love having visitors and certainly make the most of their time in Melbourne. In fact, we often have friends of the student staying with us ask if they can swap home stay families or at least come stay with us for a nice or two.
About 2 years ago, we had a lovely young girl from just near Nara come stay with us. Her name was Yuu. You - and Yuu too - can probably imagine the mix ups we had when dealing with the English and Japanese languages.
Yuu, not you, became a dear friend to our whole family. In fact, last Christmas, my parents and I found ourselves in Osaka and invited Yuu to dinner. Yuu has a great sense of humour so the confusion her name can create in the English language is not lost on her, and probably not lost on you either.
So we put it to her. "Why Yuu?" She didn't miss a beat. "My mother wanted something that was easy to pronounce in English." She said this as she shrugged her shoulders with a "What can YOU do?" expression of resignation on her face.
Out of all the simple Japanese names...it had to be Yuu.
Labels: Engrish Janglish, Japan, Melbourne, O, That's Japan Baby