“What happened?” Alarmed, she looked around the living room at everyone wailing and crying.
“They’re marking the anniversary of deaths from previous years,” he explained.
“It’s sirvavigadas.” He thought back to his childhood. “In this instance, it’s about remembering loved ones who died. They started the tradition when I was a kid.”
“It’s a dramatic way to remember.”
“I guess they’re feeling the pain again.” He contemplated. “Seeking it out.”
“It looks oddly invigorating.”
“Yes.” He said, realizing how life-affirming it was. “Maybe I’ll join in one day.”
Beauty of the World: In this series I use an “untranslatable word” in a story.
These wonderful words capture the beauty of languages around the world.
Sirvavigadas (Hungarian, v.): lit. ‘weeping-feasting’; taking one’s pleasures tearfully; ‘celebrating’ misfortune in an extravagant manner.
For more wonderfully untranslatable words, see:
- Untranslatable Words, by Tim Lomas, PhD.
- Lost in Translation: An Illustrated Compendium of Untranslatable Words, by Ella Frances Sanders