Word for the Travel Wise (03/18/06)

For some reason I had great difficulty picking a word today until I looked down on my foot and discovered the perfect word to pass onto you all. Strangely enough I have only one word tattooed on my body and luckily it isn’t the name of some estranged ex-boyfriend. Rather it is a word I use to remind me how I would like to live my life and one of the ultimate goals I’d like to achieve. The first two things people always ask when they see the tat is “what does it mean and didn’t it hurt getting it on your foot?” To answer the second question first, the tattoo didn’t hurt at all. I did have to hold my leg to keep from kicking the tattoo artist because the needle kept hitting a nerve that causes that kicking reflex, but it tickled for the most part. To answer the first question I will provide you with today’s word.

Today’s word is an Arabic word used in Qatar:

taeadol – draw, a tie (like in a good game of futbol)

When I selected the word I did so in Farsi, a language I had been pretty avid at learning while living in Los Angeles and in Farsi ‘taealdo’ means balance. It wasn’t until a few years later in Tampa when a gentleman from Qatar noticed the tattoo and told me it’s meaning in Arabic which is quite similar to the Persian meaning when you think about it. I’m just glad to know it didn’t mean something like tapioca or the color perry-winkle (two of my least favorite things) in Arabic. The major lesson in today’s word for the travel wise is to make sure you investigate all meanings of a word before you ink it on your outer most organ.

My Language Exchange is an excellent site in making friends across the globe while zoning in on the areas that give you the most trouble in your language of choice. While most services are free, contacting other members does cost a very small fee. Other learning tools for free standard Arabic online include this Learn Arabic site which has some remarkable lessons. The audio sounds a bit off for me, but they’ve got both the Naskh script (easy to read when learning the alphabet) and the Latin spelling of the letter. Babel Arabic is another good source. Planet Edu has an online listing of Arabic schools all over the Middle East, Africa and the U.S. Lastly, for purchase and a quick pocket guide there’s the Lonely Planet Egyptian Arabic Phrasebook, which should be the closest to that spoken in Qatar verses Moroccan Arabic.

Past Arabic words: wafin, akhdar