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Posted by on Jun 19, 2023 in Retirement Humour |

Living Retired — ‘Talking Babble’

Living Retired — ‘Talking Babble’

Living Retired — ‘Talking Babble’

By Gary Chalk.

Jan and I are getting ready for our vacation to Norway. So, to make it easier to find our way around in the land of the rising sun, I suggested to Jan that we download the travel app called Babbel onto our iPhones.

“Dear, so we can communicate better with the locals in Norway let’s use Babbel.”

“Gary, what are you babbling about now? I am in the den. All I heard was something about communicating in Norway. If we can’t talk to each other when we are in the same house, how on earth do you expect us to be able to talk when we are cruising fjords?”

Instead of Babbel, I found a free translation site online. All you do is enter the English words you want translated into Norwegian, press enter, and just like that ‘Bob, er onkenlen din.’ (Translation: “Bob’s your uncle.”)

Jan and I decided what we really require are some of the basic — but very important phrases that any tourist would benefit having, most of all, us.

Soon, Jan and I developed a list of travel phrases that we knew we would be sure to use on our Norwegian vacation. Next, I went to my app and had each phrase translated into Norwegian. This is the list we came up with…

Driving to the airport…

Jan: “Gary, jeg haper du koblet fra krolltangen mini pa badet for vi dro!” (Translation: “Gary, I sure hope you unplugged my curling iron in the bathroom before we left!”)

Me: “Jan, jeg lukket garasjeporten, jeg Ike?” (Translation: “Jan, I closed the garage door, didn’t I?”)

Going through airport security…

Jan: “Gary, de er ved anklene dine!” (Translation: “Gary, please hold your pants up. They are down at your ankles!”)

Phrases we would use onboard the airplane…

Me: “Jan, jeg kan ikke stappe sa mye handbagarsie over setene vare!” (Translation: “Jan, I cannot stuff this much carry-on luggage overtop our seats!”)

Jan: “Gary, du har fatt mok ol pa flyet.” (Translation: “Gary, you’ve had enough beer on the plane.”)

Once we arrive in Oslo a few more basic phrases would be helpful for Jan and I. When we check in to the hotel and unpack…

Me: “Jan, du har ikke pakket undertoyet mitt!” (Translation: “Jan you didn’t pack my underwear!”)

Jan: “Gary! Dette skjer hver gang vi reiser! Pakk undertoyet selve!” (Translation: “Gary, this happens every time we travel! Pack your own underwear!”)

Of course, finding just the right words when ordering dinner at a restaurant can be a challenge…

Jan: “Jeg vil gjerne bestille et glass vin.” (Translation: “I would like to order a glass of wine, please.”)

Gary: “Gi meg en botte ol!” (Translation: “Gimme a pail of beer!”)

Last night I shared the phrases with Jan and, well let’s just say it didn’t go well…

“Jan, speaking Norwegian isn’t as easy as we thought. It’s a word salad.” I went about showing the basic phrases I had translated into Norwegian on the app.

“For instance, Jan if I say, “Jeg ma ga na” what am I saying?”

“Gary, jeg ma ga na sounds like you are ordering Chinese food. When in Rome do as the Romans and order lingonberry compote.”

“Jan, jeg ma ga na means I have to go. It’s an expression that comes in handy for guys my age. Besides, what does Rome have to do with Norway? It’s all Greek to me.”

Jans response was, well, even more to the point. “Gary, det er pa tide for deg a fa hodut ut av appen din!”) (Translation: “Gary, it’s time for you to get your head out of your app!”


Living Retired is written by humour columnist Gary Chalk.

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