(written on March 24, 2020. Pics from Myanmar COVID-19 Community.) I was shocked together with everyone in Myanmar yesterday. We have the first 2 confirmed cases announced at 11.45pm, 23 March, 2020. In the ASEAN countries, Laos and Myanmar are the only two countries left […]
Author: Win Thant
Dear readers, It’s a nice raining day here in Yangon. It’s wet and usually when the rain comes, the light goes off!! I know that’s one disappointing fact about Myanmar. But tonight, EPC (Electric Power Corporation) seems to be quite generous and no black out! […]
Hello! How’s everything going? Today, let’s learn some vocabularies for “daily action words“?
Yes! “Go, come, eat, drink and stay” as the title!
Let’s start from asking, “How’s everything going?”
I do not really want you to use a very direct translated phrase for “how’s everything going?” in spoken language but you can use the following phrases:
အေျခအေနဘယ္လိုုလဲ၊ အဆင္ေျပလား၊ ဘာေတြလုုပ္ေနလဲ။
A Chay A Nay Bel Lo Lal? A Sin Pyay Lar? Bar Tway Lote Nay Lal?
How is the situation? Is it okay? What have you been doing?
And if you like to answer something neutral like “Things just go as usual“, say this:
ဒီအတိုုင္းပါပဲ။ Di A Time Par Pal
or if you want to be more descriptive, say this:
အဆင္ေျပပါတယ္။ ဒီအတုုိင္းပဲ။ သြား၊ လာ၊ စား၊ ေသာက္၊ ေနတာပဲ။
A Sin Pyay Par Tal. Di A Time Pal. Thwarr Lar Sarr Thout Nay Tar Pal.
I am okay. Things just go as usual. I’ve been going, coming, eating, drinking and living (staying).
Vocabularies for you:
သြား Go = Thwarr
လာ Come = Lar
စား Sar = Eat
ေသာက္ Thout = Drink
ေန Nay = Stay
တာပဲ “Tar Pal” is just an ending suffix.
So you can crack “5 daily action words” in this single phrase.
Burmese Phrase: သြား၊ လာ၊ စား၊ ေသာက္၊ ေနတာပဲ။
Romanization: Thwarr Lar Sarr Thout Nay Tar Pal.
Meaning in English: (Someone has) been going, coming, eating, drinking and living (staying).
Hope you enjoy! See you next week!
People in Myanmar usually ask the other person “have you already had your breakfast/lunch yet?” to show that they care about that person. It’s a greeting word like saying “Hi, how are you?” Sometimes, it’s not only just saying “hi” but also because they want […]
The Interjection “Aww”
I was once reading a poem that my local friend posted on Facebook and I felt like it’s a cute idea that he wrote about. He speaks fluent English and the poem is all in English.
So I commented “aww…” under his status to say it’s so sweet but he was not quite happy with that because he thought I did not believe what he said in the poem and that I was making an irony.
For him it sounded like “Is that so?”.
I immediately realized that I was not careful in the word choice and that can be a bias in our language. We have a very different meaning in using the interjection “aww”.
Interjection “Aww” in English is used when someone wants to express the cuteness/sweetness of an idea or of a thing.
In Burmese, we exclaim “aww” in the situation while receiving new information or we are uncertain of an idea but agreeing anyway” or “when the information is a bit different with what we know ”.
It means something like “Oh, is that what happened?” “I have just learned from you” “what I knew is different” or “it’s new to me”, etc.
While speaking, we can see the expression of faces, the tone that is used is different, etc. But in written language, it’s only the words so we need to be extra careful.
Some examples for using “aww” in Burmese:
Aww… hote lar? (Oh, is that so?)
Aww.. Thi Be, Thi Be (I see, I see)
Aww.. A Di Lo Go (I have just realized)
See you in next posts!
Hello again! Thanks for reading our cracking Burmese blog. Wait…. “Thanks” or “Thank You”? What is the difference between “Thanks” and “Thank you”? I goggled it and than it says “thanks” is just a shorten form of “thank you” and sometimes informal than “thank you”, […]
A Simple Cracking-Burmese Magic Code: Ya Par Tel (It’s okay/I’m okay)uniburma ရပၝတယ္ myanmar3 ရပါတယ် zawgyi-one ရပါတယ္ There are many times that you will hear the word “Ya Par Tel” in Myanmar. Well, what does this mean? Ya Par Tel or Ya Tel. ရပါတယ္ / ရတယ္ (I […]
Have you ever wondered what is the difference between Burmese and Myanmar?
Myanmar has been changed it’s name from “Burma” to “Myanmar” in the late 1980s. Many foreigners still use the name “Burma” since it’s quite easier to pronounce than “Myanmar” and also the new name is not quite known. But how about the locals? Do they like the name “Myanmar” better? Is that offensive to use “Burma?”
Let me answer this question as a local and also from my personal point of view.
Locally, “Myanmar” is more used. Burma seems to be derived from “Bama” which is the main ethnical group in Myanmar and we have 8 ethnical groups. So it seems not quite fair to other ethnical groups and “The Union of Myanmar” solves the problem and feel more united! The other thing is “Burma” is used when we are being colonized and many citizens do not want to use it anymore.
From a Local person’s point of view on foreigners using the word “Burma”
You may know, we are very kind, understanding and forgiving people in the world! 😛 It’s not that much problem if you are using “Burma” or “Myanmar”, there is no problem in the normal situation and in daily life. I mean, it can be different for the diplomats or those who works relating to political environment, and they may have to be more cautious than anybody else, right? However, “Myanmar” is better to use, if I have to take side!
Burmese language or Myanmar Language?
Currently, the word “Burmese” is used more than “Myanmar language”. Because if we say “Myanmar,” people just thinks as a country. Most will say “I am finding a good Burmese teacher. I want to join a Burmese class.” but rarely, “I am finding a good Myanmar language teacher. I want to join a Myanmar language class.”
Do you know why?
Let’s see these:
The grammar structure of English goes as follow:
- Burma (Country), Burmese (Language), Burmese (Nationality)
- America (Country), American (Language), American(Nationality)
- Korea (Country), Korean (Language), Korean (Nationality)
The grammar structure of Myanmar Language goes as follow:
- Myanmar + country/language/nationality = Myanmar Country, Myanmar Language, Myanmar Nationality
- American + country/language/nationality = American Country, American Language, American Nationality
- Korea + country/language/nationality = Korea Country, Korea Language, Korea Nationality
Of course, there’re exceptional cases but you will see we do not really change in the main word, but add another word to let know whether we are talking about country or language, or nationality. (country/language main word + respective word)
According to the English grammar, they understand more in changing the word form; like “Burma” to represent the country and “Burmese” as nationality and language. “Burmese” is also shorter than “Myanmar language”, or “Myanmar nationality”.
And so after that, the word “Burmese” is traditionally more used.
If you are referring to “country”, it’s quite better to use “Myanmar” than “Burma”.
If you are referring to “language”, “Burmese language or Burmese” is more common for now, and most locals are okay with that.
If you are referring to nationality or people, using “Myanmar” sounds better to locals. (e.g, Are you Myanmar? is better, but since”Myanmar” pronunciation is a bit hard for foreigners, Are you Burmese? is still used and forgivable too.)
Words usually replaced to Burmese or Burmese people: Myanmar, Myanmar citizens, Myanmar locals, Myanmar nationals