Monday, July 16, 2007

More Proverbs and Confusion

I speak in clear, concise ways. I am rarely accused of being vague about my feelings. That is the main reason that I DO NOT GET Haitian Proverbs. It's gobbledygook to me. Even given the English translation, I don't really get the point. Here are a few more random proverbs (by request) :
Se pa tout chen ki jape ou, p'ou gade-l.
It is not every dog that barks at you that you must pay attention to.
Toro ki begle pa gra.
The bull who is roaring is not fat. (Supposedly this means - You talk too much.)
Pa okipe msye, kochon manje santiman-l nan po bannann.
Don't bother about this fellow - the pig has eaten his self-respect in a plantain skin. (The guy is hopeless, beyond remedy.)
Last Proverb today, one I actually can sort of get ... (and Troy's favorite/most used)
Bourik chaje pa kanpe.
The loaded donkey can't stand still.

(Basically means when you're loaded and ready - you don't have time to stand around - let's go!)
(Note to Dad- Dad, I think this is the equivalent to Grandpa's Porter's "we've got a dollar waiting on a dime here" proverb.)
I keep forgetting to tell about the interesting thing that happened when I left to go to Omaha for my Gran's funeral last month. I walked into the airport and a guy immediately spotted me and starting telling me I needed to go to a different line. I am wary of being pushed to the front of a line. I think it stinks when people bud in line. I pulled back and said, "No, I can wait in line." The guy said (in English) "No, ma'am - you're pregnant, you need to come with me to this line." (Motioning to a short line.) I refused and said "thanks, but I am fine. I'll wait here."

I got in the long line. I was in line for 15 minutes or so when all of a sudden a guy grabbed my bag and started walking away. I said "hey, what are you doing?" He said, with authority: "Ou gen gwo vant! - Vinni la kounyea!" (Literal translation - You have a big abdomen - come here now.) (In Haiti Gwo Vant is used for pregnant and literally means big tummy.)

So, the guy was a long way away with my bag and I was forced to follow the big tummy airport rules. I got to go to the front of the line to get my boarding pass. White people everywhere were annoyed with me. It was all very silly, especially considering that the next line, to get your passport stamped, took an hour and there was no one there forcing fat guts to the front of that line.

I am always entertained by the arbitrary rules of the airport. It is never the same experience twice.