One of the best things about learning a new language is learning phrases. Learning a culture’s phrases or saying really gives you an insider’s perspective to the people and the culture. Since Chris is out of town, I thought it would be appropriate to share my favorite German phrase that I just recently learned.
In English, we say:
When the cat’s away, the mice will play.
In German, they say:
Wenn die Katze aus dem Haus ist, tanzen die Mäuse auf dem Tisch.
When the cat’s out of the house, the mice will dance on the table.
I love this phrase for so many reasons, not the least of which being that I am definitely guilty of dancing around my house to loud music, when Chris is gone. (Okay, its not so loud because we are in Germany and I do when Chris is home, as well.)
As I said before, phrases and sayings, give you a peek into the culture. Ironically, in my opinion, this is not very descriptive of German culture. Germans love holidays and celebrating, but I don’t imagine peeking into the window of a German and seeing them dancing around their house to loud music, while their spouse (or roommate or kids) are away.
But, this phrase makes me think that I may be wrong about Germans. Germans do follow proper decorum in order to maintain their public face, but clearly what goes on behind closed doors is a little less proper and just another reminder, that once you break past the outer German shell, there are some crazy cool people waiting to be known.
I personally think we should adopt this phrase in America. Its much more representative of our culture than the phrase we currently use.
Who’s with me?