Africa · Madagascar · Peace Corps · The Nomadic Life

A Short Lesson in Malagasy You Will Never Use

Liz and Jackie

This past week, Cyclone Felleng passed over the Indian Ocean, bringing wind, rain, and a touch of gloom to the Madagascar highlands (I’m assuming that a wind, rain, and gloom in a larger amount was brought upon the East Coast). Along with the cyclone’s arrival in Madagascar, another Peace Corps volunteer who works in the business sector that Peace Corps Madagascar is now phasing out, also arrived in my neck of the woods to help with some budgeting issues at my English Center. By noon, our work was done, but with the weather crappy enough to keep us inside, the feeling of being cozy at home soon gave way to boredom, and boredom to the ridiculous idea that we’d make a Malagasy language podcast. Of course, we would only include the most ludicrous phrases we could think of, and most of the podcast ended up being a joke about how funnily things sometimes translate (like how “to pay” in Malagasy — mandoa vola — can literally translate to “to throw up money”) and how Malagasy words are often said with dramatic emphasis or drawn out syllables.

So, please enjoy my first attempt at including media other than text/photos on this blog, and I really hope people find this ‘podcast’ as humorous as we did while making it. Please understand that this was a friendly joke and I don’t mean to offend anyone with some of our choices in phrases. I also feel it necessary to note that I don’t really tell children that “If you continue to stare at me, I will eat you” (but some Malagasy parents do instill the odd belief on their children that white people will eat them, which really just makes the idea of saying this amusing).


Photo: (1) Two Peace Corps friends… (no they are not the ones talking in the podcast!)

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