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  1. #1
    Senior Member arboc!'s Avatar
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    SPEAKING french in canada

    i was just wondering how important it was to know french in canada? like if i wanted to go to whistler or somewhere else similar?

  2. #2
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    haha i went to Canada last year i think, well thats an intersting question. Most of QUebec is primarily french speaking, most people speak it but you can get by with english speaking since all the stores understand english. anywhere else its okay, if you do speak french and your used to french from france like I am, the canadian french has a very distinct accent which took me a while to get used to. Interesting that you post this in the mountain biking forum though.

  3. #3
    Senior Member arboc!'s Avatar
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    well lots of great mtb is in canada and im thinking about going to canada this summer.

  4. #4
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Its not. I don't know french at all. Going into quebec it is useful but otherwise, its useless. We only do it to keep the quebec gov't happy. Most people don't remember anything once they graduate. Esspecially further west. We have lots of french speaking canadians here (from quebec) but they only have an accent and speak english. If they tried to speak french to other people, it would be pretty commical.

  5. #5
    Senior Member arboc!'s Avatar
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    ok well thats good to know. im taking french in school... not like knowing how to say your birthdate, or what the weather is like will help.

  6. #6
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    I can barely say my name. I avoid quebec. The language never sat well with me and neither did the ability for them for force me to learn it. I hate the language, don't have the tongue for it. German was so much easier.

  7. #7
    Recovering Retro-grouch CRUM's Avatar
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    I thought, by law, anyone who deals with the public in Quebec has to be bi-lingual. I know when I spent quite a bit of time in Quebec on businees in the 70's, I had no problems.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member arboc!'s Avatar
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    what are they gonna do arrest you for not speaking french?

  9. #9
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    No its not law (I don't think). But it isn't law for them to put up bilingual signs. And they can refuse service by simply speaking french and not giving an english speaking canadian the time of day. Some parts of quebec are far more ignorant than others on how they treat non french speaking canadians.

  10. #10
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtjumpP.1
    what are they gonna do arrest you for not speaking french?
    Think no shoes, not shirt, no french speaky, no service...AT ALL...oh and the rest of canada has to have bilingual signs too btw.

  11. #11
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    Well it would be foolish of a canadian shop owner to not have at least one english speaking staff on board, the bulk of candadian tourism is english speakers. I will say speaking French made it much easier

  12. #12
    Senior Member arboc!'s Avatar
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    heres another canada question. when is the snow gone at whister in the summer?

  13. #13
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    You can start biking may. Mountain opens shortly after. I wouldn't come until june

    Well it would be foolish of a canadian shop owner to not have at least one english speaking staff on board, the bulk of candadian tourism is english speakers. I will say speaking French made it much easier
    Maybes its changed but 10 years ago (I forget which city, quebec or montreal), I could not get served. They require us to know both but won't themselves. They might be able to speak english but they expect you to speak french, without it, they didn't serve me

  14. #14
    Senior Member arboc!'s Avatar
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    nice... sounds like a summer road trip to me.

  15. #15
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    I will be doing a june road trip (if I can find another driver)

    whistler -> Kamloops -> Kelowna -> Penticton -> Rossland -> Nelson -> Fernie -> Golden -> kamloops/sunpeaks

    Can't wait.

  16. #16
    Humaniod Typhoon -Stretch-'s Avatar
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    i speak fluent french i live in toronto, but thats only cause i take a french prgram at school....west of ottawa, you dont need to know french at all...
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  17. #17
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    English was my 5th language.
    The French spoken in Quebec is a 'patois' or bastardized French. Most Quebecois will not to speak English or really don't care to (just like most Americans!)
    Americans tend to be mono-lingual and figure if they speak English LOUDER you'll understand them! Many Americans just don't care to learn a foreign language . . . their loss, really.
    Speaking a few words/phrases in any language usually brings a smile to the native speaker's face and most are happy to try out their English on you
    The Canadians are great folks! Enjoy your visit!

  18. #18
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    figure if they speak English LOUDER you'll understand them
    I am posting that one on the bulletin board. We have 60% american tourists and this is so true. "pardon me"....."I SAID MY BAG IS STILL IN THE ROOM" (image louisanna accent for example)..."no sir, I heard you but I didn't quite understand you"..."I SAID MY BAD IS STILL IN THE ROOM"


    hahahahaha...oh man thanx for the laugh.

  19. #19
    Humaniod Typhoon -Stretch-'s Avatar
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    lol...ive seen that in action a good couple times too....sometimes i wish i could film it...
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  20. #20
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    Its very true, i remember in Paris (the people there are real shifts sometimes) I was listening and theres these other americans who wanted to know where the bathroom was so they ask the guy @ the register and he doenst speak english, doesnt need to. And so the guy keeps asking where it is louder, he eventually starts saying it clear and slowly. It looked bizzare. But yea the canadian folks were really hospitable, i would love to go back.

  21. #21
    Ride bike or bike ride? Hopper's Avatar
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    Yeah when I was in Paris, I found that the people were much nicer if you try French. I have had a whole 2 years learning it at Highschool and I sucked. But sinde I tried they would help me out more than if I just went into a place and asked in English.
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  22. #22
    Now with racer-boy font! Moonshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom
    Maybes its changed but 10 years ago (I forget which city, quebec or montreal), I could not get served. They require us to know both but won't themselves. They might be able to speak english but they expect you to speak french, without it, they didn't serve me
    I found the same reaction in the 80s. I was a long haul trucker and ran textiles to Montreal and back each week. If I ever strayed off the main roads I'd have to use my very sketchy French if I wanted to get served. Once I made the effort to speak French the waitress would always help me out. I had to learn what Pont meant (bridge) and camion(truck) and seulement (only) to understand the road signs.

    Quebec is a lot of fun to visit and I'd love to go back one day. I think it's Quebec City that has a huge castle. I can't remember what it's called, I just saw it from the road.

  23. #23
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    I've been to Montreal and BC... don't speak a lick of French and didn't have problems. If they don't want to speak english, I just moved on. It's not a big deal to me if someone can't speak to me in my language... I figure I'm in their country, but someone at some point or another will speak my language if I just keep on walking and looking around for what I need.

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  24. #24
    Senior Member swifferman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom
    You can start biking may. Mountain opens shortly after. I wouldn't come until june



    Maybes its changed but 10 years ago (I forget which city, quebec or montreal), I could not get served. They require us to know both but won't themselves. They might be able to speak english but they expect you to speak french, without it, they didn't serve me

    You must have the worst luck in the world. First I hear about you hating Ontario and now Quebec, ROFL!

    I personally can speak french well enough to survive, where is the train station, grocery store, important things but if I didn't need to, than I just spoke English the 5 times I've been to Quebec.
    And all the times I've needed to, have been never. However, I went to major city centres (Quebec City and Montreal) so I guess if you headed out to a small town they could be rude probably. Like when I was little we went out to the country ( a whopping 20 minutes from Quebec City) and this woman's husband who owned the farm couldn't speak english. (Maple Syrup farm)

    But the other guys are right, anywhere you're not in Quebec, you don't need any French at all. It'd Be neat to go to Whistler.

    Also, you're not required to know both, just to try and learn it. Their English is like our French would probably be the fairest comparison. It's not like they think French is better, just that they don't want to lose it. (They might, I'm not Quebecois so who knows)

  25. #25
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    I am from ontario. Never said I hated it. Just said it isn't as good as bc and I would do my best to never move back. Bc is where it is at for the way I like to live. We work to live, ontario is very corporate...bc isn't.

    http://bb.nsmb.com/newforum/showthre...threadid=50776

    Thats a great thread on nsmb as to one of many reasons I prefer bc. (I am roasted on other forums)

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