Monthly Archives: September 2010

Would you like to go to Tobago?

September 27, 2010 | Leave a comment

We do get some funny calls sometimes.  This morning, a nice gentleman called to tell us that his wife had booked a holiday to Tobago.

“That’s nice” our Bronte said.

“Well, I want to change the date” said Mr Man

“Okay” said Bronte, puzzled.

“The hotel is fine, but the dates just do not fit” said Mr Man.

“How can I help” Bronte replied.

“Well, one of your colleagues sold me the holiday and …”

“I hope not” said Bronte “Because if  Seb has been selling Tobago holidays again, I’m going to have to have words with him”

“Why”?  Mr Man was now puzzled.

“Because we’re a Scandinavian Cafe and Seb is only allowed to sell meatballs”.

“What does that have to do with Tobago”?  said Mr Man.

“Nothing” said Bronte.  “I think you might have the wrong number…”

“Oh…Are you sure”?  Mr Man said quietly.

“Yes, but I shall certainly ask Seb is he’s been moonlighting as a travel agent and get back to you if he has” said Bronte.  *click*.

We do get some funny ones.  This place used to be a flower shop and we still get calls about japanese flower arrangements from time to time.  Many, many people also call us for advise.  One time, a lady called to ask if we could speak to a Scandinavian Airline on her behalf because she felt that they had not listened to her complaint properly.  We also get calls to ask if we stock slightly unusual things, such as “the block of wood you use when you need to cut hasselbaked potatoes” (i.e. a block of wood) and some ask us why we do not stock traditional Swedish Outfits. Hmmm…

Still, the strangest one was a lady who called a while back:

“Hello, is that the Scandinavian food shop”?

“Yes, how can we help” said Bronte

“I’ve got a Norwegian jumper, you know, one of those wool ones with the patterns on”


“Well, how do I wash it”?

“ehhh…”  At this point, Danish Bronte was puzzled and decided to ask our resident Norwegian:  “Ehhh, someone wants to know how to wash a norwegian jumper”?

“Tell them to dig it down in the snow” was the answer.

“Our Norwegian person says you need to dig the jumper in the snow” said Bronte to the nice lady on the phone.

“but it’s summer…There’s no snow in Berkshire”.

“I see…” said Bronte.

“I have a freezer, do you think that will work?”

“I’m sure it will” said Bronte.

“Good.  It’s a bit small, but if I fold it properly and take the peas out, I’m sure it will fit.  Thanks for the advise”


Feel free to send us your own stories.

Do you speak Svenglish?

September 7, 2010 | 7 Comments

Being a Scandinavian shop we have a lot of ex-pat customers.  Some who have lived abroad since before the war and some who are fresh off the boat.  We’re also all ex pats and we know it can be difficult, this language thing.  So, here’s our guide to good Svenglish and what to watch out for (note:  Swenglish is when Swedish and English becomes a bit too fused)

Example of stuff you might want to consider not shouting across the shop floor;

“No, I don’t like that one, get the one without the kants on it” (Translation: No, I don’t like it, get the one without corners) – thanks, Victoria, for that one.

“I’ll be there in a minute, I’m just hanging my twät” (I’ll be there in a minute, I’m just hanging my washing” (Oh, Victoria, you make us laugh).

“I see you’re a hooker, sir” – when talking about golf, try not to make up your own words in English, it could go very wrong

“Do you want to go to the rest room before we go” should never be answered with “No, thanks, I can do it in the car” – in Swedish, rest means hvila i.e. to rest.  Not toilet.

A course of food, in Swedish a “mellanrätt” is NOT called “intercourse” in English

If staying with an English host and you do not want a cup of tea, you do not say “I think I’ll jump over the tea”.

A Swede helping an English customer in a bank: “would you please fill in this blanket, and show me your leg”.

Also, no, it is not called a “fart limit” but a “speed limit” in England.

And, in researching these sentences, we found this one, as overheard between two people:

Pilot: “What are those yellow fields below us?”
Flygledare: “It´s probably rapefields.”
Pilot: “Oh, you have fields for that in Sweden?”

DO feel free to let us hear any great Swenglish, Danglish or eh – Norwenglish – mistakes you have made.  The best ones wins free lunch at Scandi Kitchen, so dont forget to include your e-mail (the address will not be posted on the blog)


Kitchen People x

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