Well then... start learning as many languages as you can. You never want to feel out of place... And recently I went to lunch with the President of our company, the man makes more than all of us on mothering combined and he had no problem asking the waitress what was on the menu. It was in Hebrew... there was an English version but I think he really enjoyed talking to the people there... always learning.
By the way that's not the norm for us, he just chose to do his town hall in our City and wanted all of us to have a meal together.
Wow. I have no idea why you seem so angry and offended.
As I said, I grew up in a working-class family and neighborhood. I am comfortable there. My husband grew up in an upper middle-class family, and while he's wonderfully open to friends from all walks of life, there are parts of that working-class world that are incredibly foreign to him. He has sometimes felt left out because he didn't get whatever reference or cultural norm that the other men were discussing. Those situations are what I'm considering when I think about my children's lives.
I think that you took my question to mean that one should go only to high-end places, but I'm thinking more of work-related situations. Yes, knowing the right wine to order does matter in some professions. It goes beyond food, though. I'm expected to understand references to classic literature and be able to discuss philosophers. I often have questions about what's acceptable and expected in certain groups.
I would not ask for someone to translate a menu because that just doesn't mesh with my style. That's not the way to learn for me - a single word, yes, but not an entire menu. I would never ask for someone to translate for me when I'm out with a client, for example. In the instance I mentioned, I was with an older person in my profession, and she would have been mortified if I'd asked for a translation. My answer after that situation was to pick up pocket tourist guides in a range of languages and learn the basics. That doesn't mean it's the only or best way to handle the situation, but it's how I opted to do it. I will make sure that my kids know how to order and ask for the bathroom and do those basics in a number of common languages.