What if I told you that the way you pronounce a single word could make or break your next vacation? That by simply getting it right you could unlock the greatest “hidden gems” your travel destination has to offer?
Too good to be true, right?
As Northern snowbirds make their way down South for the Winter, they bring with them the accents of their hometowns. Now, if you’ve visited the South for any length of time, you’ve noticed that we pronounce certain words much differently than our brothers and sisters up North.
One perfect example would be the word “Murrell”, as in “Murrells Inlet, South Carolina”. Often, tourists to the area will pronounce the word “Myurr-ells”, as if the word was spelled “Muirrells”. In reality, the name of this charming coastal town sounds like “Merr-ells”, as in “mer-maid”.
Now, mispronouncing a single word probably seems like no big deal, but it can actually have some vacation ruining effects. Think about it like this: what if someone came to your hometown and completely mispronounced its name when asking you for dinner recommendations? Of course, this would immediately peg them as a tourist.
This is not to say that there’s anything wrong with being a tourist – not in the least. Instead, it simply means that you would give that person the same recommendations you would give any vacationer. I don’t know about you, but that’s the last thing I want when I’m on a trip. I would much rather visit the area’s “hidden gems” – which are normally reserved for locals.
For example, the last time I took a trip to Puerto Rico, I made it a point to learn the correct pronunciation of a few areas that I was visiting. This got me in tight with my cab driver, who ended up taking me to his personal favorite restaurant for lunch. He even ended up ordering my meal for me, because noone there spoke English – talk about a truly local situation!
So now that you’re armed with the info you need to speak like a native, the only thing left to do is get yourself down here to Murrells Inlet SC and get the true local experience.