Man Waiting Outside Restaurant in Little India © 2011 . All rights reserved.

Hello Please Where You From Garlic Nan?

I just wrote a post describing a very negative experience Ge and I had dealing with touts in Indonesia. Sometimes, however, they can produce the most interesting phrases crafted out of a simplified version of english that sometimes has us smirking from ear to ear for hours. Refer to the title of this post for an example that still gives us a few chuckles whenever it pops into our minds – and it often does. Walking through Singapore’s , employees of restaurents or stores selling various crafts or entertainments often hand out menus or subtly utter the words “have a look please” or “take a look sir.”  One time, however, we were presented with this doozy…”Hello please where you from garlic nan?” all uttered as a single phrase; a question we were meant to somehow respond to. We just smiled and said “no thank you.” Pretty priceless if you ask me.

Here are a few more common words or phrases we’ve been constantly hearing from :

You need Transport?
Where are you from? Where are you going?
Yes, Looking?
Need something? You look something? Something? Very cheap…Cheaper than cheap
Mango Pineapple? Manicure Pedicure? Massage? Marijuana (in a hushed whisper)?