Boris Is Now Swedish

, , , , , , | Right | August 7, 2020

I work night audit in a hotel. Monterey is a tourist town drawing in people from all over the world. The surrounding towns, however, are generally much less attractive vacation spots. We regularly get guests who are from Monterey county but not from Monterey. They come to the town, usually for honeymoons, because we have a reputation of being a place rich people go on vacation, but we’re close enough to home they can drive.  

One night, I’m checking in one such couple, and a pair of our regulars have come in behind them. They are an older Swedish couple that stays with us every year for their anniversary.

Newlywed Husband: “Hey, man, so what’s there to do in this town? I mean besides golf and beaches.”

Me: “Well, there are a few museums, there is Carmel Valley, Cannery Row, several hiking trails, and of course, the world-famous Monterey Bay Aquarium.”

His wife scoffs.

Newlywed Wife: “The aquarium, really? I’ve gone there every year since kindergarten on a school trip; you expect me to believe its world-famous?”

Mr. Swede, in the most stereotypical Swedish accent ever — much more exaggerated than his normal voice — with his wife nodding along, speaks up.

Mr. Swede: “Oh, ja, it is, it is. We come all the vay from Stockholm every year just to see it. Is amazing; so lucky you are to see as child.”

The wives start discussing the fish with each other, sharing funny stories while I finish checking in the newlyweds, hand them their keys, and send them on their way.

Mr. Swede changes to his normal voice as soon as they get on the elevator.

Mr. Swede: “So sad how little one appreciates the wonders close to home.”

Me: “I was concerned something had happened to your voice.”

Mr. Swede: “Ah, yes, it is aquarium you see, turns me into Outrageous Over Top Accent Man, makes your bored Americans suddenly see the magic of the place. You send a bottle of our usual wine to their room and put it on our bill. Put note on it; if they want to come with us to aquarium sometime this week we will buy their tickets. Outrageous Accent Man loves being tour guide.”

Mrs. Swede: *Sighs* “Ya, every year he finds a bored American to show around, is his favorite game. The Accent gets worse every year. This is the fastest it has ever found its new friend, though.”

According to the day shift, the couples met up in the lobby a few days later and left the hotel together. I hope The Accent had a good time that year. They weren’t able to visit like usual this year; I hope they are doing well and we see them next year.

In Soviet Russia, Accent Speaks You

This story is part of our Best Of August 2020 roundup!

Read the next Best Of August 2020 story!

Read the Best Of August 2020 roundup!

1 Thumbs