[PLEASE KEEP ANONYMOUS BC I DON’T WANT TO BE FIRED]
I’m a bra fitter in the UK. Won’t name the store, but it’s one that’s internationally popular so occasionally we get people from abroad coming in to bulk-buy English bras because they fit better and are cheaper.
A few months ago a German woman, who didn’t speak any English, came in for a fitting with her two daughters to translate for her. What she didn’t know was that I speak near-fluent German because I used to work in Bochum as a primary school teacher.
I fitted her for an hour (she wanted a LOT) and she slagged me off the whole time - “she doesn’t know what she’s doing / she’s so young– have they given me an intern? I want a professional / I won’t take fashion advice from a girl that heavy / she’s not using european sizing, is she stupid” - and her daughters translated VERY favourably, both of them clearly quite uncomfortable with the situation.
I put on a brave face for the whole thing, pretending not to notice, and then as I was putting in her customer info (we keep a record of all our customers) one of the daughters complimented me for pronouncing their surname correctly.
I said thanks, and casually dropped into conversation - in perfect German - that I used to live in Germany and spoke the language.
Watching all the colour drain from that woman’s face as she realised what just happened, and seeing her two daughters quietly lose their collective shit behind her, was pretty glorious. Almost made it worth it.