In my opinion, the phrase, “Thank you!” to me, is very important and often rings music to my ears. I remember growing up and my big brother,Mario Bernheim,
( author of Michael’s Reward) would often tell me,” Thank you Sabrina!”, just for washing the dishes, I was living at his house rent free, that’s the least I could do. And, yet, he went out of his way to show his appreciation when he didn’t have to. That taught me a lot about courtesy and showing appreciation towards others. I remember it made me feel so special and appreciated, just over a small task. But, my brother was smart because it also reinforced my chances of doing the dishes again (lol). Not only that those small things in my childhood reminded how important it is to not forget your manners, even in the most smallest of moments. Those details of one’s childhood often find their way into the fabric of your adult life. How often do we forget to say, “Thank you” and the small acts of kindness towards our well being. Or, how often do we stop and slow down long enough so it comes from the heart. Good manners is not some thing to be done like automaton behavior (we aren’t robots), but should be expressed from our natural instincts when something happens that we are grateful for. Perhaps, when we want to show appreciation and joy to someone when they do something for us for our well being and happiness.
My new Pakistani friend, Salma ( like Salma Hayek),that works at the Palymyra News ( The 24 hour Magazine and Off license shop in Bayswater on Bayswater Road),taught me how to say,” Thank you!” in her native language Urdu, which is “Shukria”.There are so many different cultures in Bayswater, the area I live in London, that I figured I should at least learn how to say in a different language,”Thank You!” Since then, I have learned how to say “Thank you” in 15 languages.
2. Shukran ( Arabic)
3. Shukriya( Hindi)
4. Shukur (Kurdi spoken Iraq, Iran)
5. Gum xia Hokkien (Chinese)
7. Toda raba (Hebrew)
8. Spasibo (Russia)
9. Nandri(India, Southeast Asia)
10. Tesekkür ederim (Turkey, Northern Cyprus)
11. Tashakkur (Uzbekistan)
12. A dupe (Nigeria)
13. Asante(Southeast Africa)
14. khob-kun-Ka;If you are a woman; khob-kun-Krub,if you are a man(Thai),
15. Arigato ( Japanese).
Take a note that in Farsi, they say ” Merci” like
the French, say “Merci Beaucoup!”. It’s probably the only French
influence on the Iranian language. Also, the prefix for “THANK YOU !” is the same in Urdu (Shukria),Arabic (Shoukran), Hindi ( Shukriya),Shukur (Kurdi). Nonetheless,it’s very easy to get confused and so I often tell the Hindi person person Shoukran and Arabic person Shukriya. It’s interesting because Urdu has elements of the Arabic language. Urdu (اردوUrdū, IPA: [ˈʊrd̪uː] ( listen), historically spelled Ordu, Ordos dialect) is a Central Indo-Aryan language of the Indo-Iranian branch, belonging to the Indo-European family of languages. It is a derivative of Hindustani, owes its roots to Sanskrit and is the national language and one of the two official languages (the other being English) of Pakistan. Spoken in five Indian states, it is also one of the 22 official languages of India. Its vocabulary developed under Sanskrit, Persian, Arabic and Turkic. In modern times Urdu vocabulary has been significantly influenced by Punjabi and even English.
Of course, my favorite “Thank You!” is in Hebrew because it’s hilarious as a Spanish speaker: ” Toda Raba“, because “todo” means “all” ( Spanish), and “raba” sounds like roba, which comes from the infinitive robar means “to steal”. I find it funny !!It doesn’t make any sense, but it’s interesting to find out how the different languages sound the same. It’s even more interesting to discover how similar cultures share similar langauges roots. The best part is that it’s even more fun to start talking in a certain language and connecting with people on a different level just because you speak their language.