Shannon’s Creative Photo Challenge: Words

For this week’s challenge I have chosen some signs we saw in China with Chinese characters and the English translation! Knowing a small (i.e. minute) amount of Mandarin Chinese I fully understand the difficulties in translating between these two languages. Nevertheless, I enjoy reading the signs!

(Click any picture to open the gallery – some of the words may be easier to read there!)

More ‘words’ to see at Shannon’s Creative Photo Challenge: Words!


  1. My favorite is 民族公园-racist park. Truth be told they could do a lot worse. I mean mainstream media often mistakes western names, like Obama’s name was spelt wrong in Chinese and they kept spelling it wrong because they were afraid to lose face.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I always enjoy reading “Engrish” (is that an offensive term?) translations. It’s always a reminder to me that as familiar as English, in all it’s weirdness, is to me, it’s an overly complicated and relatively broken language. Learning German has also underscored that…

    That being said, my mom got a photo in Cambodia that said “Do Not Sit on Dragon”. That, I concurred, was excellent advice.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am trying to work on German now with its page-long nouns. I like English syntax over French and its arbitrary-gender based articles and noun combos. Mandarin, though, is a whole new world. The grammar is simple – the inflection of the sounds is very difficult for me. And I cannot wrap my brain around characters rather than alphabetic words!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, there’s a seemingly-arbitrary gender assigned to nouns in German too… So in that regard, German’s not easier than English.. But the declensions mean word order isn’t as important, and emphasis is more fluid.
        I have no choice but take your word for Mandarin. I have no experience with it at all… but I can imagine the character thing is difficult.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Character-based languages are so alien to the way my brain works – I have worked with Chinese and know a good many words, but I cannot fully grasp putting it all together. Right now, I working on some German with its multi-line word lengths!


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