21 May 2013
Well, it's that time of year again, the prelude to the rainy season. However, the rainy season here is not like a monsoon. It just means that from now until sometime in October it will rain once in awhile. Some years it will rain quite a bit and some years not so much. Like everywhere else these days we don't get a real weather forecast that you can pin down and chew on, we get a probability forecast as in "There is a thirty percent probability of afternoon showers". I guess that can mean that there is about a one out of three chance it will rain in the afternoon or else it will only rain only on about one third of the city. What is the difference between a thirty percent probability and a forty percent probability in "layman" terms? I really don't think there is any. About the only thing that you can say about this system is that there ate really only five discernible increments in the probability that it will rain:
1.) 100 percent - It is most likely raining or about to rain.
2.) 60-90 percent - Most likely it's going to rain.
3.) 50-50 chance - Might as well flip a coin.
4.) 40-10 percent - Most likely it ain't going to rain.
5.) 0 percent - It definitely ain't going to rain.
The reality is that because our climate is so mild here people who aren't actually farmers don't pay much attention to the weather forecast anyway. If you ask someone if they think it is going to rain you are likely to get the following answer:
Pues, puede que sí o puede que no, lo más seguro es ¿Quién sabe?
Well, it could be yes or it could be no but the most sure thing is...Who knows?
Speaking of the rain the conversation could also go something like this:
Vamos a salir pero parece que va a llover.
Let's leave but it looks like it's going to rain.
¿Por qué dices eso?
Why do you say that?
No sé pero voy a llevar un paraguas por si las moscas.
I don't know but I will bring an umbrella just in case.
¡No estes de mal agüero!
Don't be a jinx!
por si las moscas = just in case (The first time I heard this I thought it meant "for if there are flies")
mal agüero = bad omen, jinx
pájaro de mal agüero = prophet of doom, bad omen, bird of bad luck
echar la sal = jinx
Example, When one friend sees another walking with a young lady he might say to him later:
¿Cuando te vas a casar?
When are you going to be married?
¡No me estes echando la sal!
Don't be putting the jinx on me!
(Note that it literally sounds like "Don't be throwing salt at me" in English)
¡Si me caso serás mi padrino!
If I marry you will be my best man! (Also "padrino" means patron or sponser meaning he will have to pay for the wedding)
Here is one last phrase and then I am done. If two people start talking simultaneously about the same thing one might say to the other:
Toca madera o me debes un chocolate.
Knock on wood or you owe me a chocolate.
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