Happy Chinese New Year!


ปีนี้เป็นปีม้า ปีมะโรง ปีที่ 7 ของปีนักษัตร

Pee née pen pee máh, pee márohng, pee thêe jèd khŏrng pee nákkàsàt

This year is the year of horse, the 7th year in the zodiac year.
Happy-Lunar-New-Year-2014-Happy-Chinese-New-Year-Wishes-and-Greetings-Wallpaper-ImageCredit picture: http://poetrysync.blogspot.sg/2014/01/happy-chinese-new-year-2014-wishes.html


One Word A Day : โต

1. (verb) to grow (up); eg. โตไวๆ นะ can probably be used when you are invited to your friend’s daughter 1st birthday.

2. (adj) big (size); ตัวโต//tua toh means big size/large body

3. (adj) eldest (when used in conjunction with คน//khon):

พี่สาว//phêe saăo means an elder sister

พี่สาวคนโต//phêe saăo khon toh means the eldest sister


Guess which one is Toh?

Credit picture: http://www.guitarthai.com


This one is also called โต


Credit picture: http://www.oknation.com

หนวกหู//Nùak hŏo VS หูหนวก//Hŏo nùak

Not only the tone can determine the meaning of Thai word, the position is also very important. Here is an example:

หนวกหู//Nùak hŏo VS หูหนวก//Hŏo nùak



Credit: here

ทำอะไรกันน่ะ หนวกหู คนกำลังจะนอน

Tham àrai kan nâ, nùak hŏo, khon kamlang jà norn

What are you all doing so noisy? I was (or am) about to sleep.

130px-International_Symbol_for_DeafnessCredit: http://www.wikipedia.org

ฟังเพลงดังๆ บ่อยๆ เดี๋ยวก็หูหนวกหรอก

Fang phlehng dang dang bòi bòi, diăo kôr hŏo nùak ràwk

If you listen to such loud music too often, it won’t be long before you become deaf.

In addition, you might be hearing this word too:


Hŏo nám nùak


How to say ‘Friendly’ in Thai?

Some time ago, I had a discussion with one of my students (Mr. H, as usual) on the similarity and the difference between Thai and Japanese. From my point of view, both are similar in such a way that we can speak English (because we learn it in school). But we are not comfortable speaking it as we fear a lot of things. Wrong pronunciation. Wrong grammar. Wrong accent, or rather, the accent that native English speaker might not understand. One thing I have noticed is that, unless the person (Thai or Japanese) has been exposed to western culture at high level, I feel that it is quite a task to get connected (or get close) with the person using English language. They seem to understand the meaning grammatically, but not so much to the deeper sense.

What I am trying to say here is that the best way to connect to Thai (or Japanese – correct me if I am wrong) is to master their language.

On the other aspect, Japanese wins anyone else hands down when it comes to service mind. They seem to be helpful, even though you are not speaking their language. Once my friend and I got lost in Tokyo, 9 out of 10 were willing to help us with the direction with their limited English. The other one went extra mile: she couldn’t speak English but she approached her own countryman to help us with the direction. I couldn’t thank them enough.

Mr. H thinks otherwise. He feels that although some Thai people might not be at ease when speaking English – but hey we are known as the Land of Smile – สยามเมืองยิ้ม//Siam meuang yím. Thai people seem to be more friendly, more approachable, and more welcoming than Japanese. He might have a fair point: in these 2 countries he is a foreigner, whereas I am a foreigner in 1 country and another one is my own country.

The equivalent Thai word for ‘friendly’ does not consist of any ‘friend’ or ‘เพื่อน’. It is this:


pen kan eng

And because this word signifies ‘being friendly’ – so now you are at the friend’s level: เป็นกันเอง also means casual or informal. Of course, you would not use formal words to speak with your friends.


khon Thai pen kan eng

Thai people are friendly/warm/welcoming.

Do you think so? 🙂

One Word A Day : ไฟ

1. (noun) a fire, a light (literal meaning): ไฟแดง//fai daeng = red light, this is commonly referred to a traffic light

2. (noun) a fire (figurative meaning): ไฟแรง//fai raeng = strong fire = very enthusiastic/very eager (imagine a cartoon character who is running very fast and there is a flame at his back)

One Word A Day : มา

1. (verb) to come

2. (prep.) indicate the direction “towards the speaker”, “towards where/the location the speaker is” when used in conjunction with some other ‘actions’

3. (helping verb) use to indicate that the ‘action’ has occurred in the past; example is ไปไหนมา or where have you been