Saturday, February 18, 2012

How Did This Happen?

I never realized how living here in England was going to effect my speech patterns. After being born in America and then living there until I was 27 I figured I was throughly American and I was quite happy with the slight southern twang in my accent. However after having lived here for three years I have found that I have picked up a bit of an English accent. It isn't very predominant. I certainly haven't got as bad as Madonna when she was married to Guy Richie. For the record when she used to do TV interviews I would stand and yell at her through the TV "YOU'RE FROM DETROIT!!!". I just didn't realize how easy it is to find your accent changing when you live here.

I first noticed it when I would say words that had and "ight" at the end of them; such as light. In fact my husband used to point it out and poke a bit of fun at me. I should also ad that my group of best friends here in England are from East London, Manchester, Wisbech, Surrey, and Essex. It is a muddled up little group and so has become my accent and speech patterns over the last three years. Where as my daughter La has a very posh "Queens English" accent (she reminds me of an American actor in a film doing a "proper" English accent), I have been known to say things like "ket-le" instead of kettle and "I nearly snapped me debit card". When did that happen? When did "me" replace "my" in my speech pattern? Mind you I am not complaining here, it's just a comical observation.

I admit, sometimes I purposely use words that are common to the UK instead of American words because it generally makes my life easier. Things can easily get lost in translation. It has even happened here on my blog. However, because of the composition of this area of Suffolk and the large population of Americans stationed here at the air bases, I don't normally have to use UK phrases usually to get my point across. So it just strikes me funny that I now think in an Cockney/Mancunian/Suffolk/Norfolk accent. And sometimes what I am thinking actually comes out of my mouth the way that I said it in my head, which then sends me into fits of giggles.