by Audrey

Student: Teacher, what does “orso” mean?
Me: Orso? ORSO? I don’t know. I don’t think that’s a word. 
Student: Yes, teacher. Orso. What does it mean?
Me: Orso?? I have never heard that. How do you spell it? I never say that. 
Student: Orso, teacher! O-R-S-O. 
Me: Orso. Ok. Um. I don’t know. Where did you hear that? Use it in a sentence. 
Student: Yes, teacher. “I’ll be there around 7 orso.” 
Me: OHHHH!!! You mean OR….SO!!!! 


(This conversation happened in Kurdish)

Me: Excuse me, do you have helke (eggs?) 
Shop owner: Helke? Helke? What is helke?? 
Me: Helke! You know! Helke!! (makes round shape with fingers) 
Shop owner: I dont know helke. What is helke?? Helke of what? 
Me: Helke!!! Small, white – Helke!!! 
Shop owner: Helke??? OHHH! HAYLKE!! Haylke? Haylke! (goes to get a set of eggs) 
Me: Oh. Yes. Haylke. Thank you. 

I later learned that “helke” actually means “slices.” Whoops.

Language learning and teaching… Oh the joys!