My attorney resembled nothing so much as a madman, half-crazed under the Hong Kong sun, and gesticulating wildly as he tried to convince the cab driver to take us to the best hotel on the island, or - failing that - any hotel at all. The exact cause of his distress was lost on his skeptical subject, although any English speaker within earshot would have grokked his meaning almost instantly, if only from the stressed repetition of the single word "washroom"....

Learning Cantonese? Join us for this podcast and in the next eight minutes we'll teach you some must-have vocabulary for your next trip to Hong Kong, including the following high-frequency words: hotels (and cheap ones at that), restaurants and the ever-essential washroom. Some of our sample sentences in this lesson are also pretty tricky, so if you have trouble following along take a deep breath and make sure you've started from the beginning. And send questions or comments to us anytime at

 said on
April 24, 2012
Great lesson! There were some words here I didn't know, probably because my family doesn't use them; they are from Malaysia so they use different words or mix their Cantonese with Malay. With the word for washroom, for instance, I'm always hearing the word for toilet being used instead.

Are you guys planning to offer a monthly subscription in addition to your annual subscription? I don't know if I speak for any of us, but I certainly don't have enough money to cover the full $150 in one shot...
 said on
April 25, 2012
I think "toilet" and "washroom" are equally common in Cantonese, depending on whom you are talking to.
 said on
April 24, 2013
"This is one of the great things about being colonized"

Only a white guy would make such a stupid comment. Joke or not.
 said on
May 15, 2013

I'm from Canada. The comment was intended to be tongue-in-cheek. Sorry if it came out as actally offensive.