My Kannada-skill excuses!

For a long time, I've maintained "I'm an Indian" as an answer to questions like "Are you a Maharashtrian?" or "are you a South Indian?" The obvious response I used to get at times was "pataa hai... So am I". So I started a lighter tone of answers, later on: "I'm a Canadian!"

Calling myself a Kannadiga causes people to wonder, more so from the time I ended in Bangalore, *really*? People have quite often asked me why my Kannada sounds different. Well, thats because I speak Havyaka (dialect). Thats an easy answer to give when there are no Havyakas around me. Unfortunately, they too think that my Kannada is quite different! An unconvincing answer, then, is... "thats because I was born and brought up in Bombay; people usually speak Marathi out there. I can speak Marathi better than my mother-tongue". And things like "I haven't officially studied Kannada".

As an aside, I've gotten away... er, tried to get away, by saying: "English is not my first language" at other times.
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