“We – need – the – bathroom.”
“Oui oui.” The clerk pointed to the back – the restrooms were on a side hall.
“No – I just got some grease on my hands.”
She shook her head – she knew some words in English, but not many.
“Can – I – use – the – bath – room?”
She pointed to the back. “Oui.”
He sighed and turned to his wife. “What’d they say in Bonn, honey?”
His wife shrugged – she hated Europe. Too confusing.
He snapped his fingers in realization, then turned back to the clerk.
“Icch browkhe Vay Tsay!”
The clerk knew a little German as well, and knew Ich brauche WC.
She sighed, and pointed to the back hallway. Her manager had said to stick to simple words when American tourists tried to talk.
The man raised his arms in defeat and stormed out. The clerk watched with a cocktail countenance – one part amused, two part irritated. Her assistant clerk finally peeked out from behind the shelf she was stocking.
“Pourtant, un autre petit-minded American pisser sur les mains?”
The clerk nodded. “Oui.”