Gospodar, Gospodina

Many, many years ago in Romania, I had to open a bank account for reasons that I can’t remember right now. Everything was going fine until the bank employee asked me for my profession. I tried to explain that I work from home over the internet, something that wasn’t really well understood at the time….

Good News

When you have a language like Romanian, sometimes you get two (or more) similar words with subtle shades of meaning that come from two different linguistic sources. In Romanian, stiri (shteer) and veste (ves-teh) both mean “news.” The first comes from Latin and means “knowledge” while the second comes from Slavic roots and means “that…

Ba

When you’re an English speaker learning Romanian, two of the first words that you’ll learn are the equivalents for “yes” and “no.” These are “da” and “nu” respectively, and you might think that’s the end of the story. But Romanian is a unique language that has preserved a lot of Latin grammar, and that includes…

WOTD: Băcănie

If you want to know what life is like in my house, consider that my wife and I spent half an hour debating the sign you see above. I took that photograph here in Chisinau because I was delighted to see a very old Romanian word that I hadn’t seen in years. Alas, even the…

Going Down?

The other day I was walking in town and I passed a billboard with some admonishments to passersby on how to stay healthy. One thing “fun” about Moldova is that a huge percentage of billboards are used by the government, governmental agencies, or foreign NGOs to broadcast helpful information. Not quite sure if that’s due…