Tuesday, February 28, 2006
That torrential rain we were supposed to get never quite materialized. As the afternoon turned beautiful, though, I was reminded of the South African term for when the sun is shining while it's still raining: monkey's wedding. It may be adapted from the Portuguese term for same, which translates as "vixen's wedding," or a Zulu term that literally means "wedding for monkeys." Encarta has another explanation. What's interesting is that so many different languages describe this meterological phenomenon in terms of unlikely pairings: in Arabic, "the rats are getting married"; in Bulgarian, it's bears who're tying the knot; in northern India, it's jackals. In Greece, a sunshower means that "poor people are getting married." There are quite a few other colorful terms like these. Which have you heard?