Friday, February 11, 2011

Khaki Pants and February Arrivals

British English can be very different from American English. They have most of the same words here, but the same word can signify something far different than its original intended meaning. For example, I was recently told never to refer to my trousers as “khaki pants” (thank you Tara). Apparently, the word “cacky” refers to something dirty and “pants” refers to one’s unmentionables. I can just imagine myself asking a store clerk where I might find a pair of khaki pants and getting a very strange look in return.

Other words here are just different but have a rational meaning such as walking on a footpath/pavement (sidewalk) or taking the lift (elevator). Some make more sense than the American English words like using the word bin instead of a trash can, because let’s face it Oscar the Grouch is the only one who uses a can anymore and most of our trash cans are more bin-like than can-like. In some cases I like our American words better. A “holiday”(UK) is not always a “vacation”(US), a "bonnet"(UK) is not a car “hood” (US), and a “torch”(UK) is certainly not a “flashlight”(US).

Here in the UK any enclosed area beside a house is referred to as a garden (US=yard). At the border of our garden behind our house are many different plants, bushes and flowers. I’ve been looking forward to seeing what will come forth when spring arrives. But, it looks like I don’t have to wait that long. Since our weather has been so warm lately (40-50’s) I’m seeing some early buds and flowers arise. Thought I’d share my early February flowers with you:

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