A few summers ago, my hubby's wish was to "see dolphins" during our summer holiday. At the time we were living in SouthWest London, and instead of bringing him to the zoo, I went on-line and started searching for "whale watching" or "dolphin spotting." Sure enough, I found the answer to our wish, New Quay on Cardigan Bay in West Wales! We formulated a plan, and drove across the United Kingdom in search of the dolphins of Cardigan Bay.
Now, I could go on and on about how we were lucky enough to see a Sea Lion come to shore, or how the world's loveliest Welsch man gave me a personal tour of his wollen mill, but this post is about the fact that when we told people that we were in New Quay (pronounced "new key") Wales, they took the liberty of "correcting" and informing us that we were actually in Newquay, Cornwall.
So we would say, "no, we were in Wales" and they would say, "no, you were in Cornwall." We even had a couple of angry acquaintences who made so much fun of us for "being so stupid" that we were supposedly still in England and merely thinking we were in Wales.
Hmmm. How do you even respond to that? Let's see...so we sat in a car and read the signs as we changed COUNTRIES and drove for a million miles getting stuck behind farmers moving livestock from one pasture to the next, yet we were really on a giant treadmill, not leaving England at all, and just simply following signs to Newquay which we assume was in Wales but was actually still in England??
Is that what these people were getting at?
So here's the summary of the story: there's more than one New Quay. One spelled New Quay and the other Newquay. Both destinations sounding identical when spoken. These places are in two different coutries. The one in Cornwall is far more famous, and since my hubby and myself were both foreigners, it was ASSUMED that we had made some kind of gross geographical mistake in thinking that we were in Wales.
Again and again I wonder why humans are so invested in being "right" all the time. It's as if not knowing something exposes us in a way that's FAR too scary. Why is it that when we process a story where the pieces aren't fitting together, that we immediately assume that the other person is wrong instead of simply wondering if there's more than one answer.
Just for the record, there's more than one Las Vegas too. There is Las Vegas, New Mexico as well as the more famous Las Vegas, Nevada. So if you see a European at a party telling you that Las Vegas was such a lovely city while they visited New Mexico, consider the fact that YOU DON'T KNOW EVERYTHING. Nobody does.