Skip to main content

Dreich, drookit and mauchit

Sometimes regional dialects can describe things far better than standard English (whatever that is) - like the Australian crook - as in "I feel a bit crook" - immediate visual image of being not quite upright, and the audible emphasis on the double oo for 'eurgh, I'm sick'.

But for sheer onomatopoeic brilliance the Scots are hard to beat:

Take today for example -





The weather is cold, grey and damp, visibility is reduced by the constant rain, and there's a breeze that finds the gap between your jacket and neck and chills you to the bone. Thirty words, where one would suffice: dreich - pronounced dree - followed by the soft ch as in loch - something that most Englishmen completely fail to master; but whereas 'lock' is just about tolerable, in a have to feel sorry for them sort of a way, 'dreik' loses its meaning altogether. So try it - it's like the gentlest clearing of your throat, a soft wind across the back of your tongue - loch, dreich. Got it? Today defines dreich.

Four-legged-friend, out for a walk on a dreich day, became totally, but happily drookit; helped by plunging into a stream swollen by recent rain.



Drookit means drenched. Absolutely. "Dr-ooooo-kit" - say it and you can hear the image of dripping, hanging, sodden wet dog, who is now steaming and smelly by the Aga.

Lastly, mauchit:



My mauchit wellies - splendidly muddy!

So dreich, drookit and mauchit - a trio of miserable weather gnomes, Damp, Drenched and Dirty - or three fantastic words which deserve a wider audience?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Life in the slow lane - Part One.

Recent hypothetical text message from parent to adult son -

Been in the garden all day. Time for a bath first then I'll leave, with you by 8. Chilly here - have you had snow? See you soon. Lots of  love xx
PS. Bought too many aubergines yesterday - would you like some?

All very mundane; boring even? Hmmm.

In an effort to save time or appear somehow with-it or hip or whatever term is used now to mean 'not ancient', the parent could instead have sent this -

Been in the garden all day. Time for 🛁. Chilly here - do you have ❄️. 
PS. Would you like some 🍆? Lots of X

Yes, I punctuate my texts.

Punctuation, however, isn't the point here. Or rather it's not the only thing unmasking me as someone who is not hip/cool/sic or lit (which list, of course, proves without a doubt that I am none of these things).

No. The point is that with the insertion of a few emojis, I changed an innocent message about gardening, the weather and vegetables, into something x-rated and made myself …

#2019 Connections, characters and a stone ball.

Half-way into January. A small step into a new year. And I am another year older. How did this happen?

I could answer part of that by reminding myself that as I was born in January and have just had a birthday I am a year older. But half-way into January (over half-way now - several days have passed since I started this blog) and a small step into a New Year; how did these happen?

Time doesn’t stand still. I've said that before. In November's blog. I called it out as a cliche then too. It is. But if cliches can be good and I think this is a good one. Time is animated. Time moves. I wittered on about this at length. In November. Two months ago. Two months filled with frantic present hunting; over-eating; over-spending; under-sleeping; and wrapping (always late on Christmas eve - so late that I risk Father Christmas finding me sitting on the floor surrounded by paper and string - the sellotape always runs out at about 11.57pm on Christmas Eve, doesn't it? - hot chocolate insul…

Time and dreams. And a mountain or two.

Time doesn’t stand still. Not for any man or woman. Time is physics. It proceeds and there is nothing that we can do about it. Not yet anyway. Probably not ever.

While perhaps it's not great writing to start with a cliche (or even a few), the standing still of time, as sometimes observed in a moment of awe, is something we can perceive. Sometimes. Okay, time doesn't actually stop. But it feels like it does. Insert here any moment when for you time 'stood still'; that moment, perhaps, when you had raced to summit a mountain and - with your feet standing on the highest point, your body in that state of elated exhaustion - you watched as the rising sun crept long pillars of light above the distant horizon. And you realised - literally standing still - that you were holding your breath. 

The sun of course went on rising and time did not actually stop. At moments like these, we tell ourselves that it did; just for a moment. But that is an illusion. A mere mistaken perception.…