August 18, 2016 11:04 am
Learning new languages is tough.
If you could commit ten hours a day to mastering a foreign language, it would take you between 48 and 72 days for very difficult languages. Imagine you are almost there – dictionary at the ready, grammar book tucked under your arm, left hemisphere fully engaged. You have reached the glorious level where ordering a pizza in Italian or buying a baguette in French is no longer a treacherous linguistic sojourn. You might not yet be a native speaker, but after all, he who doesn’t have a dog, hunts with a cat, right? (Quem tem cão, caça com gato – Portuguese).
Confused? Do you feel like you only understand the train station? (Ich verstehe nur Bahnhof – German) But people say languages are such a roll with butter! (Bułka z masłem – Polish). Those who do must clearly have fallen from a Christmas tree! (Z choinki się urwałaś? – Polish)
Don’t worry, there’s no cow on the ice (Det är ingen ko på isen – Swedish). Getting your head around all of these idioms is not the balls of a swan (Muda Labudova – Croatian). The key is to make sure you don’t do it with the French whipsplash (Iets met de Franse slag doen – Dutch), you must not try galloping across Europe (Галопом по Европам – Russian).
There’s no way to slide in on a shrimp sandwich (Att glida in på en räkmacka – Swedish) when it comes to learning languages. But tear yourself together! (Sich zusammenreißen – German) When you finally get there, who knows what linguistic wonders you will discover!
If you are eager to know what on earth is going on here, take a look at this list of 40 brilliant idioms compiled by some inspiring volunteers who translate Ted Talks into 105 languages.
Written by Iweta Kalinowska
Communication Trainee at TermCoord
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