Saturday, July 14, 2007

Language lesson #2

My Sotho knowledge is growing.

When arriving at Granny's, this is the usual exchange, at least my understanding of it thus far:

Dumela, Gogo! (Hello, Granny)
Ahe (Hello)
Lekai? (How are you)
Kitang (I am fine)

I recently learned how to distinguish between plural and singular in greetings, making me a little more Sotho-competent. I know now that all this time I've been asking "How are all of you?" instead of "How are you?" and responding with "I am fine" when asked "How are all of you?" Maybe I'll get it right yet!

Okai? = how are you? (singular)
Lekai? = how are (all of) you?

Kitang = I am fine
Ritang = We are fine

Some more handy Sotho phrases:

Keleboha = thank you
Salampila = goodbye (when you are the one leaving--I think this translates to something like "stay well")
Samayapila = goodbye (when you are the one staying--as above, I think this one means "go well")

Phrases learned on our Banyana Banyana day:

kelapile ke lam: I am so tired
imonati: delicious
gwatonya = it's cold
gwafisa = it's warm
letsatsi lafisa: it's very hot/sunny
yisheshwa: things are happening fast (this is Zulu)

Another bonus in Zulu:
I learned last year on my Road Trip that "sawubona" means hello in Zulu. I have since learned that "sawubona" literally means "I see you." I love that. =)

Small note: I cannot vouch for my spelling of any of these words. Let me first figure out what to say when...

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