If I were ever to be endowed with a super power it would be to speak any language. Lame, or possibly geeky you say. Well, the next time you’re out at that fancy French restaurant and can’t decipher a amuse gueule from a fromage then ask yourself how lame it is to know what the heck you’re ordering. Ah, I can see you nodding your head in agreement.
But it’s not always a foreign language that can throw us. Sometimes it’s plain English with the added twist of an accent or those special words specific to one region. Ever visit Scotland? Good luck, my friend. Good luck.
I absolutely adore the Scottish accent. Maybe because I’ve seen Braveheart one too many times, but that burr sends me into a tizzy every time. I’ve had the privilege of visiting this breathtaking country twice, and boy were my ears put to the test. I like to think I kept up pretty well, but I left a few conversations with a simple nod and smile having no idea what they were saying. So, should you find yourself among the heather I’ll give you a few words that should set you right with the locals and separate you from the ignorant tourists.
Aye-yes (can also be used when encountering pirates)
Auld Reekie-Edinburgh (pronounced Edinbura. Bonus points if you can roll the ‘r’)
Bairn-child (not to be confused with barn, although with children it’s not hard to do)
Bawbee-half penny (please don’t ask me to do the conversion to $$)
Braw-handsome (throw in a little wink when you say it)
Cairn- heap of stones marking a particular spot (a must to prove you were there)
Dram- a Scotch (as in the drink)
Loch-lake (as in Loch Lomond)
Wabbit-exhausted (I think Elmer Fudd came up with this one)
In case you’re wondering where I got these gems, they’re from a fabulous little book I found while traveling through the Highlands. A tiny 40 page flip book that a list of Scottish to English words compiled by Mary Kean. So if any of these words get you a strange look, blame her.
Have you come across any strange words in your travels?