Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Multilingual Puns

¿Qué hace un pez? Nada.

Something the world needs to know about me: I'm a sucker for puns. I'm punny. Words with any sort of double meaning are fascinating to me, as a linguaphile. And if I can take that double meaning and make it funny? Sold.

Even when puns are "stupid" or "tired" I admire them for having that slight extra edge to them. Like the one above...it's one of the oldest, most-used puns in Spanish, and I love it anyway. What does a fish do? Nothing/He swims.

A second thing you all need to know is that I love my students. There's no denying it. And I love them even more when they make multilingual puns, quite possibly one of my favorite things in the universe.

I bet every ESL teacher in Spain has heard this one: How do you say nariz in English? No sé. Hahahaha. Nosé...nose. (No sé means I don't know...but it looks like the word nose!)

The other day we were doing a unit on the US states, and one of the kids went "Buff, te cansas de Kansas!" (You get tired of Kansas...but "cansas" and "Kansas" sound exactly the same in a Spanish accent) This one is extra funny because it's true. Poor Kansas. (Sorry Kansatians... Kansanians... Kansasers...oh lord. People from Kansas. According to Google the proper term is Kansans, but that sounds every bit as silly to me as my options, so I'm leaving them here.)

And finally, because my Spanish roommate was complaining that I've never talked about him on this blog, here is a pun he told me the other day. Not multilingual, but you can't always have everything.

Dijeron los piratas, "¡Abordamos el barco!" Y el barco les quedó muy mono.

(Translation: The pirates said "Board/decorate the ship! And the ship ended up looking really beautiful.)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Oh Spain

I have so much fondness for this country, where things like the above happen on a daily basis. Park wherever you want, no big deal! No pasa nada!

...which is why I'm filled with sadness to announce that it is probable that I won't be living in Spain anymore next year. I'd love to stay in Vigo forever, since I now have a life here that I absolutely adore, with great friends, delicious food to eat, and a beautiful city in which to live. But one must go where there is work. I'm not quite ready to say exactly where I'll probably be next year yet, as it's not 100% certainly decided, BUT here's a big hint to where it's likely to be for those that know me personally--my inner sixteen-year-old self is squeeing with delight.

Leaving you to think that over for now and feeling evilly secretive...ciao ciao!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Umbrella Etiquette, or Vigo Debajo de la Lluvia (Gives Me Too Much Time to Think)

Rain, rain, go away, come again some other day...

This is an extremely dangerous song to be singing in Galicia, where rain won't just come some other day, but rather EVERY other day. The forecast for this week looks like this:

More rain? What a surprise!

When you live in a place like Galicia, where on any given day it's a wonderful surprise when it DOESN'T rain, you start to learn a few things about rain itself. You begin to recognize cloud formations and to know what type of rain is coming, you get a sense of how long a given type of rain is probably going to last, you absolutely know approximately how long it will take your clothes to dry outside in the damp weather, and you learn a whole lot of rain-related vocabulary. "Sirimiri" means a light drizzle, "chubasquero" is raincoat, "niebla" is mist, "llover a cántaros" is to pour...I could go on and on.

It's kind of like the below scene in Forrest Gump. Sideways rain, rain that seems to come up from underneath...I've seen it all.

Anyway, I've also learned a whole bunch about something I'd never really even thought about before: the etiquette of using umbrellas. I almost never used umbrellas in the US. If it was raining, I'd just take the trouble to park my car slightly closer to wherever I was going and run inside. But here, I spend so much time walking around outside that being without an umbrella would be absurd. So now I know these unspoken rules:

1. When two umbrella-holders are approaching each other, the taller person (usually me) must lift their umbrella to let the shorter one's umbrella pass underneath.

2. When the above isn't possible, or you're both the same height, moving your umbrella out to the side is also possible, as long as you're not in a crowded place.

3. In couples, the boy carries the umbrella (partially because the girl is usually shorter, plus the whole chivalrous aspect to it). With friends sharing, it's whoever's taller.

4. If you forget your umbrella on a given day and it starts pouring, everyone you know will offer to lend you one.

5. Carrying your wet umbrella inside is bad manners. You absolutely must leave it in the umbrella stand by the door, despite the fact that this makes it 150% more likely that you will forget said umbrella when leaving.

And most importantly,
 6. If you carry around a pink child's umbrella, you WILL get made fun of by absolutely everyone you meet. Apparently no one but me sees the practicality of a smaller umbrella.

Getting sick of this...

So in order to not go crazy until the sunshine comes around again, I'll try to be "singin' in the rain, just singin' in the rain..."

Monday, April 8, 2013

Soy Vaga, Spanish for Hello My Name is Lazybones

So you all should know by now that I'm extremely lazy about posting in this blog sometimes. It's not that I don't want to, it's that it's not the highest priority in my life. I prefer to live life most of the time rather than writing about it. When I'm really busy, blogging falls onto the back burner, until I see someone else posting really great pictures about their travels and I feel the little green monster and want to write about my voyages as well.

And man oh man have I been busy lately. Since I last posted, I've been on 3 separate vacations to 3 separate countries (France, Poland, Morocco), with a fourth one (Germany) coming up in less than two weeks, plus I need to plan a 3-week trip with my parents during the summer. I guess I never really thought about just how much I travel until the other day when a fellow auxiliar (hi S!) came right out and said it--"Wow, you travel a LOT."

I guess I do...although I enjoy it so much that it never seems like enough! "There is more to be seen than can ever be seen, more to do than can ever be done."Wise words from The Lion King.

Anyway, more interesting content (and updates on what will be happening to me in a few months when my teaching contract here is up) soon...ahem...probably. Just wanted to say hi and remind the internet that I'm here.

For your trouble, here's a nice Galician rainbow. I'm a fan of these rainbows, except for the fact that they mean that beach weather is not here yet. Please please please get here before June, Mr. Sun...please?