The Paris attacks are very sad and horrible. I pray for those victims.
I just hope that the same thing will never ever happen again and that this tragedy will not cause another one.As you know, Paris is a melting pot. Because of this, the city has been suffering from many problems and distortions. At the same time, this diversity is one of their charms. Especially for me, living in (almost) monoracial and monocultural Japan, a diverse city is special.
Religion and terrorism are different things. I do hope that people can stop the negative chain reaction of hatred and violence and that everybody can simply live a happy life in any society. Unfortunately, they seem like impossible hopes right now. The negative chain reactions has been happening here and there...
Let’s start talking about Japanese.
There are so many English expressions with “have”, such as “Have a good day”, “Have a good weekend”, “Have fun” and so on. You can almost create as many as you want. On the contrary, Japanese has no such handy verb. (I also wrote about this in an old post.)That’s why direct translation doesn’t work for “Have a nice trip” and “Have a nice flight”. But we do have Japanese expressions for travelers.
Have a nice trip.: ryoko o tanoshinde kite ne.
Have a nice/safe trip: ki o tsukete itte kite ne.An interesting point in Japanese is that “kite ne” is attached at the end of the sentences. This “kuru” indicates that a traveler will come back to the place where he or she is now.
ryoko o tanoshinde kite ne.: Enjoy your trip and make sure to come back.
ki o tsukete itte kite ne.: Take care and make sure to come back.I just remembered what my teachers told students on school excursions. The teachers said to us every time, “An excursion doesn’t finish until you get home. Going to a destination is not the end of an excursion. Going back to school from the destination is not either. You should behave well until it’s over.”
Next, according to a dictionary, “flight” is “bin” in Japanese. But we don’t say “ii bin” (good flight), “anzen na bin” (safe flight) or “watashi no bin” (my flight). However, the following usages for “bin” are okay.
chokkobin: chokko bin (direct flight)
asa/hiru/yoru no bin: asa/ hiru/ yoru no bin (morning/ afternoon/ evening flight)
001bin: flight 001
iki/kaeri no bin: iki no/ kaeri no bin (a flight to go/ to come back)“My flight is late” is “watashi no hikoki/flight wa okureteiru.”
Here is another expression for traveling or going out. In English you say, “I’m on my way.” Its direct translation, “(watashi wa) tochu des”, is also wrong. The correct way is like this:
I am on my way (to school). : (gakko e) iku tochu des./ (gakko e) mukau tochu des.“Tochu” indicates not only being between a starting point and a destination, but also between the beginning and the end of an activity. Therefore, the following expressions are possible, too.
Tabeteiru tochu de seki o tatanaide kudasai. (Don’t leave your seat while you are eating.)
Shokuji no tochu de seki o tatanaide kudasai. (Don’t leave your seat during a meal.)
shiai no tochu, ryoko no tochu, shuccho no tochu (in the middle of a game, trip, business trip)By the way, Japanese people have been talking about how many omiyage Chinese tourists purchase in Japan. A new word for this trend has even been created. It’s “baku gai” which literally means “explosion purchase”. Japanese people are also famous for buying omiyage for family, friends and colleagues, but I think they don’t do baku gai and just buy a few of each item. It’s actually fun to buy a nice omiyage or get them, but free “miyage banashi” is also nice.
Miyage banashi: tales of one’s travelsThe other day, my non-Japanese friends visited Kyoto for the first time. They told me that they were impressed by the beautiful ryokan, were irritated at the popular spots with crowds, appreciated Japanese culture at quiet temples, and how they viewed the city. I really enjoyed listening to their miyage banashi!
Those who have taken the JLPT, otsukare sama!! I hope you will have a break from Japanese and enjoy the festive season from now on!! When you go back home, kio tsukete itte kite kudasai! And then when you come back, tell your miyage banashi to your friends in Japan.