The Armenian language is full of the funniest-sounding words. In my month-and-a-half here I have had a few good laughs while discovering new ones. Here is a selection-along with pictures and brief descriptions-of my favorite Armenian words:
BUL-BUL-AG: It means “water fountain”. Yerevan has bulbulags on just about every street corner. The water bubbles up from the fountain when you turn the faucet on and makes splashing sounds…thus the name.
SILLY-BILLY: It’s my personal favorite. Silly-billy means “to flirt”. I’ve heard that the word comes from an American named Billy who was fooling around so much that his name is now associated with flirting. You can use it in the following way: “well hello beautiful…why don’t we go the movies and silly-billy with each other during the previews…”
BAR-BAR-AG: It’s the word for ice- cream. BAR means “cold”, AG means “thing”. So Barbarag literally translates to “cold-cold-thing”.
PIR-PIR-IM: This is a funny-sounding word, I know. It is a small weed that grows wild in Armenia. You can use the small leaves in salads, and the stems are pickled and eaten as an appetizer. I say pirpirim out loud it every time I see a little kid walking on the street. I love the surprised and confused look on their faces!
PAM-POUG: This means “soft”. The word pampoug makes me want to jump onto a heap of cotton and roll around in its fluffy softness.
So, that’s it for now. I’m going to eat some pirpirim and barbarag, have a drink at my local bulbulag while watching youngsters silly-billy around, before cozying up in my pampoug bed for a good night’s sleep. See you next time!