Sunday, December 4

Friends and Dining Abroad

On my main blog, I built (for the sake of building) a Page of naive but well-intentioned tips for traveling throughout SE Asia. I did the best I could with it, attempting to show how to say three important and handy phrases for wherever they go: hello, thank you, and (very) delicious. Using even this little of the language will put you on people's good side and make your interactions more positive, as folks living overseas are used to tourists blowing through their proud nation and not making any effort to learn their language.

On Postcrossing, I listed in my profile that I'd like to learn these phrases from other nations—when people send me postcards, they come from all nations around the globe—and many senders have been nicely compliant with this request. Here's a summary of what I've got so far:

Thank You
(Very) Delicious
AfrikaansHalloDankieBaie lekker
Dzen dobry
Velmi smachna
ChineseNi haoHsieh hsieh
Xie xie
(Chang) Hao chih
ChuvashIra kun pultarTavta pusPite tutla
CzechAhojDěkujiVelmi chutné
Dank je welHeel (erg) lekker
FinnishHeiKiitosErittäin herkullista
FrenchBonjourMerciTrés bon
GermanHalloVielen dankSehr lecker
Bahasa IndonesiaSelamat pagi (morning)
Selamat siang (afternoon)
Selamat sore (evening)
Selamat malan (night)
Terima kasi (banyak)Enak (sekali)
JapaneseOhayo gozaimasu (morning)
Konnichi-wa (day)
Konban-wa (evening)
Arigato (gozaimasu - polite)Totemo oishii desu
KhmerSua s'deiAu kunCh'ngain
LaoSabaideeKop jaiSiep (lai-lai)
LithuanianLabasAčiū(Labai) skanu
MaoriTēnā koe
Kia ora (casual)
Tēnā rawa utu koeKakato
Zdravstvuyte (polite)
SpasiboOchen vkusno
SpanishHolaGráciasMolt bo
TaiwaneseLi houLou hsiaHou chia
men add "krop"
women add "ka"
Korp kun krop/kaAroi (maak)
VietnameseXin chaoCảm ơnNgon wa

While they detest hearing it, you can speak Bahasa Malaysia or Singapore by referring to Bahasa Indonesia (with some regional differences). And I added a link to Chuvash since not many people seem to know what that means.

The variations in these answers come, of course, from various regions, various learners of each language, the vagaries of transliteration, and perhaps some discrepancies in handwriting. For instance, I was not able to transliterate the Cyrillic or Kanji hands or replicate them here, but I thought they were awesome nonetheless.

I'm delighted that so many people were so helpful in providing their tongue's phrases for me! I received many contributions for Dutch, Russian, and Chinese, but as one French writer pointed out, there wasn't any French listed (I added that later, on my own). But then, she didn't provide the translation either.

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