When is the first floor not the first floor?

Recently, Cart help me to register for fitness classes at a sports centre that was near our home. The place wasn’t anything special. It looked extremely dated but I was really excited as I was raring to start exercising again after a hiatus of about 3 months since the madness of the wedding last year.

I like this picture

The next day, I went there alone. I started to ask the lady at the counter in faltering Italian, “Excuse me, where is this?” while pointing to the registration paper.

And she replied, “Prima Piano, e poi sinistra“.

I understood that she said it was first floor and then to turn to the left. So I thanked her and continued walking on the ground floor where eventually, I saw a class full of little girls doing ballet.

Ah, this could be the place! It was almost time for my exercise class. Surely the ballet class will end soon. But when 10 minutes passed and no one left, I knew something was wrong. So I called Cart up on the phone and asked him what was going on?

He asked me to pass the phone to the lady at the counter and at length told me to go one staircase up where I finally found the right room.

In Singapore, first floor would be considered as ground floor and the next level would be 2 and 3 consecutively.

Floors in Singapore

While in Italy, the ground floor is considered as level 0 while the next would be 1 and 2 consecutively.

No wonder I was lost! Just five minutes in the building, and I got confused. For sure, I would never make it through the Amazing race.

7 Replies to “When is the first floor not the first floor?”

  1. Hi Marina,

    It’s the same in the UK and in most countries, the ground floor is level 0, followed by level 1, 2 , 3… Coming from Singapore, I’ve learned that different countries do some things differently 🙂

    Cook keropok in a microwave? I have to try this as I detest deep frying anything! Too lazy to clean up the aftermath.

    Have fun exercising!

  2. Hi Wati 🙂

    Not only that, there was a person who commented that in the US, they follow the same as in Singapore, but they do not have level 13. Is that true?

    Hahaha, this will definitely add to the confusion!

    And yes, keropok can “fry” in a microwave. Just spread a few in the microwave oven and about a minute on high will do the trick and apart from keropok, you could try papadoms too!

  3. Hi Rinaz (or is it Marina ?),

    Was waiting to hear abt Jerrick’s adventure in Rome lah !

    Good tip – popping keropok in the microwave. I hate the oily smell in our open kitchen cum living room after deep frying them. Last nite I wanted some in the middle of watching a film but the idea of putting up with the smell puts me off making some. We dont hv a microwave tho, hubby thinks it consumed too much energie. Here we r collectively taught to use more of gas rather than electrics 🙁

  4. Hi Dutchie,

    Jerrick’s blog has been down for some days, but I think its up again! You could see it from this link :


    I think that he’s been busy for the past days with his schooling and other activities, but hopefully he’ll update it 🙂

    And yeah, I dont fancy wasting so much oil either. But microwave ovens dont take that much energy. Putting it in the oven would be an overkill!

    Think of it this way, it takes a longer time to fry it in the oil, not to mention hassle, so less energy is used in the microwave oven 😛

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