Saturday, July 24, 2010

My Wheel Has Hole

If you're a bike-riding foreigner in Hungary, you'll have noticed shortcomings of beginner Hungarian classes. You learn how to say you like it here ("I feel myself well in Hungary!") and how to complain about hot weather ("I have lots of heat!"). But you never learn the basic vocabulary of bicycle maintenance.

A new publication, the second edition of the European Cycling Lexicon, could help. Published by the European Cyclists Federation, it contains illustrations of 60 pieces of cycling paraphernalia and parts, together with the common referents for each item in 27 languages, including Hungarian.

It could be useful even for those with a decent command of Hungarian but who may not know the specialised taxonomy of bicycle repair. Or for cyclists who've had some experience with local bike shops, but who would find themselves at a loss for words when confronted with a loose "crank" (hajtókar) or a noisy "internally geared hub" (agyváltó).

In addition to being a useful cycling dictionary for your day-to-day needs in Hungary, the book is something you might want to pack on your next tour abroad. In fact, with words and phrases for all European languages plus Russian, Japanese, Chinese and Arabic, this is really its intended purpose.

Along with the lexicon on bike parts, there's a section called "on tour" with translations for terms like "bike shop," "bicycle ticket for a train," and "bicycle route map." A section of useful phrases has translations for queries such as "Is this road hilly?" and "Where are the nearest accommodations?"

1 comment:

Nick said...

Now THAT I have to have! Particularly if Croatian's included among the languages. Thanks for the info.