Day 008 Randomocity
Day 008 – July 30, 2011
It’s Like They Have a Different Word for Everything
One of the tools that I am attempting to use to assist with my lack of command of the local language while I reside here in Peru is a trusty Spanish-English dictionary. Please note that all translations seen below are subject to Disclaimer No. 2.
Entitled The New World Spanish/English – English/Spanish Dictionary, it has come in handy when I have tried to study certain everyday verbs such as “take”, “put”, or “drink”. When I have been out of reach of Google Translate, this reference book has helped me learn simple requests like “Take me to the school, please” (Llévame a la escuela, por favor), “Put the broccoli in this bag, please” (Ponga el brócoli en esta bolsa, por favor), and “I would like to drink Sprite, please” (Quiero beber Sprite, por favor).
However helpful this tome may be in certain situations, I have to shake my head and wonder why certain words made it into this work.
My favorite example is “foolscap”. When will I ever need to use the word “foolscap” (folio) when chatting with someone on the streets of Peru? I cannot think of a time when I would ever need to utter the phrase, ¿Puedo pedir prestado un poco de su folio, por favor? (“May I borrow some of your foolscap, please?”)
Other examples of words in this dictionary that I would be hard-pressed to think when I would use are “hillock” (loma), “rheum” (catarro), and “cablegram” (cablegrama).
It probably doesn’t help that my dictionary was published in 1968 and actually looks like it was printed on foolscap.
Slowly…slowly…and after only eight days, we are beginning to adopt some local customs. While I have spent some time in this e-space scratching my head over the differences between where I came from and where I am now, this is one un-similarity I can embrace.
Tonight, we stopped off at Don Mamino’s (made most famous by Sin Polaris in this post) and picked up some bread.
That’s it. Just bread.
Croissants, yema, egg bread, and other types of doughy goodness whose names I can’t recall were all the items we purchased for the evening meal for our family of five. Lunch for this Saturday had been quite large, so we were now about to attempt the Latin custom of eating a light supper. Dinner in the States is the big meal, but that is not the case here. Perhaps people sleep better south of the Equator because their stomachs are not as full at bedtime. ¿Quién sabe?
With the bag of bread in the center, we also added to our tableaux a tub of butter, a jar of jam, a jar of peanut butter, slices of edam cheese, and a bowl of guacamole superbly made by my loving wife.
We sliced, we slathered, we spread, we ate, and we shared as I would like to think a typical peruano family would be doing.
And with that Day 008 was finished.
(…and we all slept well.)