Saturday, March 12, 2011

My Θεία Loves me - Communicating in Grenglish: the Best of Both Worlds!

Absolutely gorgeous from all points of view!
Picture source: Litsa F - thanks a million!

We just loved this picture by Litsa and thought we would share it with you ...

Anybody who has grown up in a Greek Community of any English speaking country of the world  who looks at this delightful picture of little Zachary will know exactly what it says! For us it epitomises what we are all about.

As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words...

A lot has been said about the way we Global Greeks communicate depending on where we are. In Greece we may speak Greek with the occasional English word thrown in while in our host countries we may speak the other language with the occasional Greek word thrown in.

Linguistically it probably isn't the best thing to do, but the beauty of being bilingual gives us the ability to swap and change around at will, without trying too hard to find the word that applies in the other language, especially if you know the other person speaks both languages also.

Sometimes we have been criticised as trying to show off, but in most cases people realise that it is a sign of being equally comfortable in both languages...

A couple of our favourites  that spring to mind from when we were growing up in our community abroad in speaking to our Greek friends is

Are you going to koinonisei on Sunday?!!!
(Are you going to receive Holy Communion on Sunday?)

Unpistevable! (Unbelievable!)  

What do you think? Are there some words or phrases that you use regularly?

YiaYia is cooking (remember, that means she has the koutala)
Thanks too to Lynn V-K for the eloquent picture above that she posted on our Facebook Page

Cafe Aman America released some great Grenglish Rebetika songs which beautifully illustrate this linguistic phenomenon that goes right to the heart of the Greek Diaspora. In their instance of course, it's the other way round, the main language of the song is Greek interspersed with English words. 

The song below , Giati Glyko mou Sweetheart, is one of the best! 


Giati glyko mou sweetheart, na me pligoneis toso hard... 
I dont'know giati den mou les to No...

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