Sunday, March 18, 2007


Nemluvím česky

I've arrived in Prague for the IETF meeting. It's going to be busier than usual for me, with the IAB appointment — that means that today starts at noon (it's a little after 10:30 now, I arrived at the hotel a little before 10, and they don't have a room yet so I don't get to shower and change before the meetings start) and there are 7 a.m. breakfast meetings every day before the regular 9 a.m. conference start time.

It's rather strange being in a country where I don't know a single word of the language. The post's title is pasted from a web page with important phrases; it means "I don't speak Czech" (at least, that's what the web page says it means), but I'm not entirely sure how to pronounce it. And I can't even guess at most of the words and phrases I see. For instance, the web page with the phrases tells me that I'll hear this on the subway:

Ukončete výstup a nástup, dveře se zavírají!
...which is alleged to mean “Finish exiting and boarding, the doors are closing!”

I'll take their word for it. Nemluvím česky.


The Ridger, FCD said...

I don't speak Czech either, but my Eastern Slavic languages are enough to let me know that that phrase does mean what they say it does. Interesting - it looks like the "reflexive" particle that makes a transitive verb intransitive (se) comes before the verb in Czech instead of being a suffix as in Russian or Ukrainian. Cool.

nina said...

I hope you'll have some time to enjoy Prague and take some fotos.

Jakub Horky said...

This article is very funny to me:-) I'm from Czech republic. Only one note: "Nemluvím česky" isn't used very frequently, because it means "I don't speak Czech" - so you can but you simply don't want to. Better is "Neumím česky", which means "I can't speak Czech". :-)