Tag

Words Beyond Translation

Culture

Words Beyond Translation: Ojalá

Cusco, PeruHow often does what we desperately wish for come true? Ojalá has always been one of my favorite Spanish words, perhaps precisely for the magic and the possibility that it holds. Although it is directly translated to “hopefully,” ojalá actually…

Read more
1 Comment
Advice, Culture

Words Beyond Translation: Hacerle Ganas

Antigua, Guatemala The expression “hacerle ganas” in Spanish captures a sentiment of strength and perseverance that I’ve consistently found present in Latin American cultures: specifically, what it means to keep moving forward towards a goal, even when faced with adversity. Hacerle ganas…

Read more
Leave a comment
Culture

Words Beyond Translation: Retrouvailles

When I think of a reunion, I imagine two long-lost lovers running towards one another, limbs akimbo as fireworks play in the background. But in reality, encounters between loved ones are much simpler and meaningful than that. Rooted in the…

Read more
Leave a comment
Culture

Words Beyond Translation: Lagom

Skinnskatteberg, SwedenThe Swedes are well-known for their minimalist, functional, and sustainable approach to living, and this is reflected in the untranslatable word lagom. Lagom means not too much and not too little: it’s just the right amount, and as the Swedish…

Read more
Leave a comment
Culture

Words Beyond Translation: Waldeinsamkeit

Colorado, United StatesI recently came to learn of a German word that perfectly captures one’s deep and intimate connection with nature. Waldeinsamkeit roughly translates to “the feeling of being alone in the woods.” The structure of the word says it all:…

Read more
1 Comment
Culture

Words Beyond Translation: Vale la Pena

Lazio, ItalyVale la pena is an Italian expression that has a direct translation but, as a native Italian speaker, I can tell you that it’s not quite the same. Vale la pena means “it’s worth it,” yet there is a…

Read more
7 Comments