I’m sometimes surprised at how many people know simple sign here in Salt Lake. In noisy situations I will often tell people I’m half deaf and many times I don’t hear my name (or number) being called.
Yesterday I went to an Einstein Bagel place. They take names down and at the point, I let him know I was half deaf and probably won’t hear my name called out. I asked him to wave at me instead. He went behind the counter, tapped a girl on the shoulder, pointed to my order and then me. She nodded her head so I relaxed. When she brought my order to me, I told her thank you and she signed back to me thank you. She must know someone who signs or took an interest in the language. I walked out smiling.
Another time I went to a Jiffy Lube to get an emissions test on a car. I went through my routine of letting him know I was half deaf and wave at me. He smiled and started signing at me instead. He was better than me! When my car was ready to go I asked him where he learned sign. He said a friend of his signs so he learned too.
One of my favorite burger joints around here is Crown Burger. It is a busy place with lots of noise and they call out numbers. Every time I go in, I go through my routine of not hearing well. They always tell me to go ahead and sit down, they will bring my order to me. At first it made me feel awkward. I can’t hear but I’m perfectly capable of carrying my food to the table. After a few times, I relaxed into routine and came to really appreciate it. There was no struggle in for me. I like going there and there’s a been a few times someone there has also signed thank you to me.
Such a simple, easy sign but it almost always makes me smile.