I’m Learning the Language of Silence

Not sure if I’ll share this one but I’ll write it anyhow.  I’m learning that in Belarus and surrounding areas there are terms and terminology that just don’t make sense to me, like greetings such as hello, in America people walk by one another smile, gesture with a nod or even say hello but in Belarus, as you pass an individual nothing is said, not a smile, not even a nod but most definitely not Привет pronounced (privet) nor Здравствуйте pronounced (Zdravstvuyte) mean hello.  So I ask why have the term hello if your not going to use it?  The answers I have received are those terms are used with your close friends Привет or with acquaintances Здравствуйте but my retort was how do you ever get friends if you never say hello to anyone.  I mean they see their neighbors working in their yards and nothing is said or acknowledged, I even went are far as to ask why don’t you just say how is your day, как дела pronounced (kak dela) literally means how are you, the response I got was do you really care how they are feeling, well maybe I don’t really but it is a conversation opener.  No conversations wanted nor needed end of story……..silence pretty loud and lonely.

Next I move onto excuse me or Извините pronounced (Izvinite) it’s a term used but only in one situation if you are going to ask someone a question, but if you bang into someone, or inadvertenly get in their way nothing is said so Извините for bothering you but I had to share with you some of the sounds of silence I am learning.  And in the naked light I saw ten people, maybe more, people talking without speaking, people hearing without listening, people talking in their heads that voices never share and no one dares disturb the sound of silence.





6 thoughts on “I’m Learning the Language of Silence

  1. Celine Hughes

    My Mom grew up in the Bronx, NY. She told me that nobody said hello to people walking down the street. When she married my dad, they moved to Mt. Prospect in 1852, my grandma came with from NY. When the neighbors would stop by to welcome them to the neighborhood my grandma said they were just being nosey!! Nothing like the friendliness of the Midwest! Living in Singapore we had the same situation… nobody said hello. People would walk with their heads down. I still said hello to everyone. Probably thought I was weird, but I didn’t care!! Hello, Tommy Mac! Have a nice day!


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