breathtaking northern lights in Lofoten, Norway. Witnessing the perfect
rainbow on Skye (pictured above.) Or the obvious tourist feeling you get
when you can’t order a crepe in Paris (the French word for that is
"Dépaysement," if you’re curious.)
Sometimes the English language
can’t quite capture these surreal experiences—there’s a reason we’ve
adopted words like "wanderlust."
Although we’d love to include
words already integrated into English like "schadenfreude," and words
that don’t 100% pertain to travel like "Kummerspeck," (Grief bacon/fat,
the German word for weight you gain from overeating while upset) or
"Shahat" (Tunisian word to get drunk by sniffing shoe polish), here are 10 words you may actually use during your next vacation abroad.
Terroir: [French] The combination of unique geographical,
historical, cultural, and culinary aspects of a region. Specific
examples may be Burgundy in France or Tuscany, Italy.
Vukojebina: [Serbian/Bosnian/Croatian] A place in the
middle of nowhere. We love the word because it literally translates to
English as “Wolf-fuckness.”
Mamihlapinatapai: [Yaghan] The scenario when two people
are looking at each other, each wishing the other would initiate an
action both desire but are unwilling to begin themselves. It encompasses
that annoying vacation moment, “What do you wanna do?” “No, what do you
Natafelen: [Dutch] To linger at the table after finishing dinner, continuing conversation, having drinks, and enjoying the company.
Slampadato: [Italian] A person who frequently uses tanning
beds. The oompa loompa tan. It’s tempting to bronze before your
Caribbean vacation, just try not to be a slampadato.
Utepils: [Norwegian] A beer you drink outside. Now, they just need a word for the soft pop when you crack your utepils.
Teangloir: [Irish] Some who is learning a language.
Yahourt: [French] A foreign song you sing despite not
speaking the language, instead just imitating the sounds. Finally, a
word for an attempt singing “99 Luftballoons.”
Friluftsliv: [Norwegian] A cultural enchantment with
nature. Something almost all Norwegians, and those lucky enough to sail
the fjords, experience.
Pasalubong: [Filipino] Travel gifts. In English, we’d just
use souvenir, but pasalubong covers literally any gift you bring back,
whether it be a magnet for the refrigerator or a giant container of
Nutella because it’s $5 cheaper in Germany.
[Photo: Tommy Burson]