The Rooster says what?

My Husband used to have a job where he was the host to an international event once a year.  I loved this, it was always fun for me.  I have never had the good fortune of living overseas, which is probably by the grace of God.  As I,  have no proclivity for a second or third language, unless you count Toddlerease. 

I did look forward to these events every year, more than any other function. 


Let me add here, I am a cackler.  I am not always demure, or elegant.  I really like to have fun, and usually do so at my own expense.  So, DH likes to keep me in eye shot, to make sure I have not tripped, or offended anyone, or cut in line etc.  (I am getting better at these things). 

I always loved the cocktail hour before the events, because a person can actually mingle sans all of the formality of a very formal dinner.  The cocktail hour allowed us all a chance to mingle and chat. 

I had learned something years ago from one of my favorite authors David Sedaris that when mingling with those from foreign lands, it is best to ask the following 2 questions.  "What does your rooster say?" , and "how do you celebrate Christmas in your country?"  These 2 questions have caused more laughter, and have served as great ice breakers at every International event I go to. 

And just in case you would like to know what a rooster sounds like in far away places….

Danish: kykkeliky

Dutch: kukeleku

English: cock-a-doodle-doo

French: cocorico

German: kickeriki

Italian: chicchirichĂ­

Norwegian: kykeliky

In fact, at  the last event we had quite a growing circle going.  People bent over in laughter, each thinking "the next country’s rooster" was more ridiculous than the next. It was fantastic. 

Oh and just in case you wanted to know, the French do not say fromage when getting a photo taken, but they laughed hysterically when I did it. 

About the Author


Rachelle began her Military Spouse career when her future husband proposed to her in a letter during Desert Shield. Mail took over a month to arrive back then, and they only had three phone calls with each other in the ten months they were separated. They were married at a small ceremony a week after he returned home. Rachelle's husband moved her to Ft. Bragg, NC, all of their combined possessions filling her small, two-door car. In 1992, they left active duty and moved back to their home state where she went to nursing school and he joined the Army National Guard as a traditional Soldier as he went to school. In 1999, Rachelle's husband was offered a full-time National Guard position in Arkansas, where they lived for eight years.

In 2002, their son was born (MFO Deployment) and in 2003, their daughter was born (OIF2). In 2008, they moved back to their home state to live close to family. Rachelle has been an active contributor with SpouseBUZZ since 2005. She currently works full-time at a physician’s office, and is active with her church and school's PTO. Her son has recently been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome, a subject that she is exhaustingly studying and learning to work with day-by-day. In 2010, Rachelle's mother-in-law moved in with the family, and they added a German shorthaired pointer named "Poncho" to the tribe as well. Rachelle enjoys spending as much "down time" with her family as possible - usually something outdoors or movie nights. Her favorite foods are sushi, steak, chocolate, and coffee. Her special skills include being an awesome cook, identifying odd accents by state or country, having an incredible sense of smell (almost bloodhound-like), and watching people at airports during long, unexpected layovers.

  • Sarah

    My husband was tickled to find out in his class what the rooster says in Farsi. When I figure out how to write it down, I’ll let you know!

  • I will definitely have to keep those 2 questions in mind for my next big international event (um, whenever that might be).
    “Not always demure.” Ha! I think that’s why we like you. :D