I’ve decided to finally getting around to making a blog for my move to Germany, because I feel like I have great stories all the time. Unfortunately, now that I’ve gotten the site all organized, I’ve drawn a blank. So, instead of telling an immigration story, I’m going to make a list of my favorite German words – well favorite literal translations of German words
As I’m sure you know from my header, because of course you read it, a Faultier is a sloth and it translates literally to “lazy animal”. Now, the English word “sloth” does have ties to laziness, but it is an older word that isn’t really used much unless someone is referring to the seven deadly sins. “Faul” is the current German word for lazy, and it is pronounced like “foul”, which adds another layer of humor.
“Glow pear” – I know light bulb isn’t terribly different, because a bulb is the bit in the ground that plants grow from (Germans refer to these as onions, regardless of the plant), but for some reason the image of glowing pears still strikes me as funny.
I know this sounds like “hand shoe” – which is what it directly translates too, but it actually refers to gloves. Crazy, I know. I would think that hand sock would be a better fit, but “handsocke” is apparently too ridiculous, even for Germans.
Back to animals, this translates directly to “nile horse”. The elegant sounding “nile horse” is actually a hippopotamus – which in itself is a silly word.
Kranken-anything is funny to me, but I find “Krankenschwester” to be the funniest. Kranken means “sick” and schwester means “sister” – so together it means something along the lines of “sister of the sick”. This is the word for nurse. I’ve been told that more and more “Krankenpfleger/in” is used, which means “carer of the sick” and can apply more easily to any gender, but “Krankenschwester” is still hanging in there. We also have “house of the sick” (Krankenhaus) and “vehicle of the sick” (Krankenwagen) for “hospital” and “ambulance” respectively.
Did I miss any words? Please comment and let me know! And if you have any questions or ideas for me to write about, leave them below!