Mar. 20th, 2015

mbarker: (Default)
One of the funny things about learning a language as an adult is that there are holes in your vocabulary. Yesterday, walking home, the kids in front of our apartment were all having fun with jump ropes. When I thought about it, I knew how to say, the children are jumping, but I didn't know what the word for a jump rope was. So I stopped and asked one of the mothers, who laughed and said, "nawatobi." Then she thought about it, and said... Nawa? Tobi means jumping, but nawa -- maybe it's nagai, which means long? She wasn't sure where the word came from, but she was sure it was nawatobi.

I looked it up, later, where I found out that nawa actually means straw rope! So apparently this is old enough that they were using straw ropes for jumping.

And now I know one more word of Japanese. So I can joke about a jump rope. Maybe.

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