These guys are really in the doghouse! Haha. When it comes to apologizing in Mandarin, there are many options. But, the most common are: 对不起 (duìbuqǐ) and 不好意思 (bùhǎoyìsi).
Being able to apologize is particularly handy when traveling in a foreign country, because travelers have ample opportunity to demonstrate ignorance of local norms.
Hopefully, your transgressions will not be as serious as these guys’s!
|Zěnme le?||What Happened!?||Typical reaction to finding things are not as they should be. Tone of voice is everything for this one.|
|Duìbuqǐ.||I’m sorry.||Composed of “duì” (towards) “bù” (not) and “qǐ” (rise), it is sort of like saying “I can not raise my face towards you”.|
|Bùhǎoyìsi||I’m so embarrased||“bùhǎo” (bad) and “yìsi” (meaning) combine, for some reason, mean “embarrassing”. This is somewhat less apologetic than duìbuqǐ.|