I was a waitress at a Chinese Restaurant in Roseburg, Oregon. A middle-aged man sat in my station and I brought him a menu. After we greeted each other, I took his order.
"Where are you from?" I asked.
"I'm from Oregon," he answered with a nasalized accent.
I took his menu and came back with a pot ot tea. I thought him to be from somewhere in Europe.
"Where were you born? You must've moved to Oregon when you got older, huh?"
"No, I was born in Oregon?"
I delivered his order still trying to pinpoint the region of his accent.
"You must've spent time in another country as kid, huh?"
"No. I've never been out of Oregon."
My last trip to deliver his check and see if could bring dessert, I was determine to solve his accent.
"I know....I bet your parents are from another country. Don't tell me. Let me guess. It's Germany isn't it!"
He didn't answer right away. But he finally gave in to my endless interrogation and with a soft voice he said,
"I had a throat operation when I was five."