Today I asked the girls to teach me something. Of course when setting this I really didn’t think about what I could teach them in return! What do I know how to do? I could tell you guys how to make my famous brownies, but having already blogged about that it seems like cheating. I could tell you how to make a Christmas stocking, but Fiona is making those herself so I’d rather something more original! Today I gave my parents their advent calendar, made from cones of paper stuffed with tissue paper, a Christmas fact or joke and little present, but I got that idea from Pinterest sooo…no good. If I was on my laptop I could teach you how to make a felt gingerbread man, but I’m not. Hmm. Stuck.
I think I’m going to have to go with something I know Katy and Fiona will like. I’m going to teach you some of my favourite Welshisms. Starting with…
Cwtch – Cwtch is probably the best Welsh word going, in my opinion. It basically means cuddle (or snug as we found out yesterday) and to me just sounds very appropriate. It rhymes with butch for those of you wondering how to say it. Sometimes you just want a cwtch, it’s cute, I like it!
Taw a dy lol – Don’t talk rubbish! (tore a dee lawl) This phrase came from a Jenny Sullivan book I loved as a kid. It’s one I use quite often, despite having to explain what it means which usually distracts from the point you’re trying to make. It does however, usually move the conversation on quite nicely, good little phase in that respect!
Diolch – (dee olch) This is the Welsh word for ‘thank you’. ‘No thank you’ is ‘dim diolch’ Maybe it’s not my favourite word, but it’s good manners to know how to say please and thank you in a language! Incidentally the Welsh word for please is VERY complicated, therefore ‘please’ works just fine!
Popdi ping – Made famous by Aled from the Chris Moyles show, this is the Welsh word for microwave. Say it as you see! It literally translates as ‘oven that pings’….it’s that kind of simplicity which makes me smile!
Trenni fach – One of those ‘aw poor you’ phrases! (again say what you see tren ee fach, fach…te only way i can think of to describe how to pronounce this is like dark with a Liverpudlian accent, haha!) Trenni fach translates as ‘little pity’ I think, but it’s usually used in quite a sarcastic way, by the people I know anyway! Haha! Oh you have to work? Trenni fach! Get on with it!
Cariad – (carry add) This is another word which is used in several ways. It’s love and also sweetheart; often used for friends, family, loved ones and sometimes in the same way northerners etc say ‘alright love!’. It’s a pet name, affectionate, good word!
Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch – Try saying that 10 times fast! I first learnt to say this in 2002, I was travelling to the States on an exchange and wanted an ‘interesting fact’ up my sleeve! Llanfairpwll is a village on Anglesey. It’s the longest place name, certainly in Europe, if not in the world and translates as [St] Mary’s Church (Llanfair) [in] the hollow (pwll) of the white hazel (gwyngyll) near (goger) the rapid whirlpool (y chwyrndrobwll) [and] the church of [St] Tysilio (llantysilio) with a red cave ([a]g ogo goch). Apparently this name was created purely as a tourism stunt! Certainly seems to have worked, with people travelling purely to have their photo taken by the railway sign etc, if you can fit it all in one photo that is!
Bore da – Good morning! I use this one almost every day funnily enough, along with Nos Da which is goodnight. Remember with Welsh there are no silent letters, you pronounce every one. So bore sounds like boar eh, nos sort of rhymes with force, with a very soft r!
Nadolig Llawen – With tomorrow being the 1st December this one seems appropriate. Nadolig (na-doll-leg) Llawen (cl-ow-EN) means Merry Christmas.
Seren – Seren means ‘star’ but is often a girls name as well. I think it’s quite pretty as a middle name really, I know of a girl called Seren Wyn (white star) and a few Nia Seren’s too. It’s not as ‘hippy’ like as an English kid being called Storm (apologies to any Storms, or parents of Storms out there), in fact there’s almost certainly a few out there who probably don’t even know it translates to anything! For example my name apparently means ‘pure’, is that a translation? No idea!
So there’s my top 10 Welshisms for today 🙂 I was going to go down a ‘basic Welsh’ route, teaching you ‘My name is…’ (fy enw i ew’) and how to get extra large portions of chips (in Carmarthen anyway!) but honestly it was complicated, and boring, whereas maybe you’ll remember a few of these! I hope you enjoyed it anyway 🙂