Sunday, 9 December 2012

Proof-reading required

Today we took a snowy Sunday afternoon stroll. Partly it was to walk off a generously proportioned late lunch but mostly it was to see the waterfall; we've been back in Jajce over a month and had thus far failed to pay it a visit. It is still there, still looking good. So good I would have been posting a wonderfully wintery picture here. However, it was upstaged by this recently installed tourist sign.

Clearly the sign cannot compete with the waterfalls as a thing of beauty. But it highlights what is a surprisingly common problem with tourist signs in this part of the world: poor English translations. This is even more noticeable now we can read the local language. We know what they're trying to say. All too often it is lost in awkward translation. This sign is advertising Jajce as a "museum under the open sky" - something the town genuinely is - and is sponsored by two international agencies. However the English translation is clumsy and, in one section, part missing. This is a shame. It would have taken a native English speaker about ten minutes to read the text and make the small adjustments that would make all the difference. We've see too many tourist brochures (and restaurant menus) that could have used similar help. Perhaps the British Embassy in Sarajevo should be offering a proof-reading service!

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