A girl goes to Chinatown in Frisco and she finds out that in many shops she visits they don't speak any English. She comments to herself: "Don't they understand that they should speak a real American language from a real down-home part of America, like England?" There 2 things I don't get: 1) down-home - is the southern part of the US, right? How doeas England fit here?? (well, there's a lot of humour in this novel, so it might be a joke I don't quite get) 2) the whole sentence in bold: what meaning does it have?