I have been an immigrant for 12 years now. I am committed to the country I live in. I have a family here. I dream and think and write in my new language.
But I am homesick. On and off, especially when I’m tired. Of a perpetually different point of view. Of a land that looks as beautiful as mine, but alien still. Of food that doesn’t taste right.
I wouldn’t go back. I didn’t fit in there 12 years ago, I sure won’t fit in now. From time to time, I read what my people have written. For today, it is proverbs (easier to translate 😛 ):
Don’t sell the skin of the bear from the forest.
You have the courage of a drunk turkey hen.
No one is born knowledgeable. Even Jesus had to learn carpentry. But there’s a lot that died stupid.
Don’t give your sword to the enemy.
Sloth is a grand lady who doesn’t have what to eat.
Sloth is looking for work hoping not to find it.
When you are drowning you cling even to a straw.
With time and patience the mulberry leaf becomes silk.
May God not give you what you can endure.
Charity from a stranger is like a thistle’s shadow.
With a hard-working man, poverty looks in the window, but cannot come inside.
Who steals an onion today will steal a mare tomorrow.
When two are arguing, the third one wins.
Who’s looking for an argument finds a hiding.
The handle of the axe comes from the forest it’s cutting.
Rather a handful of books and a bagful of brains than a handful of brains and a bagful of books.
God save me from friends, I’ll save myself from enemies.
The wise learn from others’ mistakes, the fool cannot learn from his.
During war, iron is more expensive than gold.
Better a crooked peace than a just war.
Man is like a shadow, you take the light away, he’s gone.
A bad man is like coal, even when he doesn’t burn he will blacken you.
Either speak like you behave, or behave like you speak.
You can’t see the chafing wound until you take the saddle off the horse.
The belly may be satisfied, the eyes – never.
The rot starts at the root, but it is first seen in the branches.
You don’t know someone until you have eaten a cartload of salt together.
A fool throws a stone in the pond and 10 wise men can’t take it out.
Pity the one who forgives the magpie but holds a grudge against the dove.
A small stump will topple the big cart.
Good cheese in a dog’s skin.
We are born naked, wet and hungry. Things get worse afterwards.
If you follow a fly you will reach manure.