Expanding Vocabulary

In addition to seeing and doing the things we've been seeing and doing (e.g. see previous posts), we've also been able to notice there are words and phrases that aren't necessarily commonplace back in the States. Below are some of them.

Adverse camber: seen on a road sign for an approaching turn. For example, if you're making a turn to the left but the road slopes to the right on that turn, that turn has an adverse camber.

HTFU: an acronym imploring someone to not be so thin-skinned.

Armitage Shanks: not a word or phrase, per se, but a company. A company, though, that must have a monopoly of sorts, for their ceramic products are in almost every single bathroom I've been in (the UK's "American Standard").

Chin Wag: an informal chat, like in "After the bike ride, I joined my fellow cyclists at the cafe for a chin wag."

Pay at the till: pay at the cash register.

Lovely: a word that is often sprinkled in everyday-type conversations.

Brilliant: see Lovely above.

Mind the gap: anyone who has ever ridden the Underground (London's subway system) has almost certainly heard or read this phrase. It's a gentle warning to passengers, both those boarding and disembarking, to be aware of the vertical and/or horizontal gap between the platform and the train.

Rocket: what us in the States call Arugula.

Knackered: tired, exhausted.

Whilst: while.

Top up: to replenish something, monetarily. For example, if you have a phone card and it is low on funds, you need to top up.

Single track road: another road sign, letting you know the road ahead is wide enough for just one car going in either direction.

CCTV: closed circuit television. Man! This place is loaded with it, as there are few establishments or streets or whatever that don't have it.

Order at the bar: few pubs have table service, so this is what you do to get your food and drink.

Take away: your options for where you want to eat your food at certain restaurants are "Dine In" or "Take Away."

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