“When I started throwing up this morning, it was like, chunks of food mixed in with snot. Yeah, like slimy, barfy food chunks. And like, these little black specks mixed in,” I’m telling the triage nurse. “But now I guess my stomach’s empty, ’cause the only thing that comes up now is this bitter clear stuff.” I’m not telling the nurse about my vomit (thank heavens), I’m interpreting what the patient is saying to the nurse. So, I’m saying what someone else said, but saying it as if it were me. That’s the easiest way I know of to describe interpreting in the first person, and it’s the standard for professional interpreters.
When we train interpreters, I can really feel them digging their heels in on this one. Continue reading “Me, myself, and I: The magic of first person interpreting.”