Saturday, 29 August 2009

On My 5000th Tweet

This week I reached a bit of a milestone in my online life. I tweeted for the 5000th time!

As I’m a bit of a fan of nice round numbers, I wanted to mark the occasion with something special, rather than just going on about what I’m having for supper, or complaining about the weather or exclaiming LOL, which seems to be what I usually do on twitter! Those of you who were here at the beginning may recall that I used my 2000th tweet to announce the arrival of this blog! Then again, you may have better things to use your brains for!!

So, here, in all its glory, is my 5000th tweet:

TWEET 5000 fivethousand cinqmille funftausend cincomil cinquemila pěttisíc pięćtysięcy pettisuća piecitūkstoši ötezren viisituhatta beşbin

I thought I might just say a few words here about the languages I chose to express my 5000ness, and why I chose them.

Cinq mille is French. I love France very much, and, although I’m not exactly fluent in the language, I can generally get by reasonably well. The Wonderspouse and I spent our honeymoon in France; we had a week in Bordeaux and another in Perpignan. In fact, not a year has passed since we were married that we have not been to France, even very briefly.

Funftausend is German. German was the second language (after French) that I learnt at school. I also had to use it quite a lot when I worked on my (sadly, unfinished, after finance cut out) D.Phil. on Mendelssohn’s String Quartets. These days, however, I’m less likely to be reading the Allgemeine Musikalische Zeitung from the 1800s and more likely to be asking for Wurst!

Cinco mil is Spanish. My Spanish is pretty atrocious really, but I adore Spain. I first went there when a college friend of mine married a Spanish girl in Segovia – their wedding was absolutely stunning. The Wonderspouse generally reckons Spain is his favourite country, particularly the area around Granada. We’ve had several memorable trips there.

Cinquemila is Italian. Italy is so lovely. I first went there with a boyfriend many years ago, and was utterly charmed. I took my Mother to Venice a few years ago, and was charmed again. The Wonderspouse and I have also visited both mainland Italy, and Sicily, where we fell in love with Taormina and were fascinated by Etna!

Pět tisíc is Czech. Czech is another language that I have, in fact, been able to have extremely basic conversations in. I set about learning Czech about 10 years ago, partly because I was interested in Janáček’s music, but mainly because my boyfriend at the time promised to take me to Prague if I did!

Pięć tysięcy is Polish. We first went to Poland simply because the flights were cheap. However, we quite fell in love with the place. I still have ambitions to learn more Polish. We spent some time in Warsaw, some in Katowice, and a magical winter weekend in Gdansk, where we toured the shipyards in freezing conditions – magical and very moving. We’ve also developed a taste for bigos (a kind of stew), and are delighted by the number of Polski skleps now around in Britain.

Pet tisuća is Croatian. Croatia is the location of one of our absolute favourite hotels, the Regent Esplanade in Zagreb. We have been there a couple of times, once for New Year. The hotel is magnificent, the city is delightful – just beware if you are out in the centre of town at midday because they fire a canon each day and the first few times you hear it you jump right out of your skin!

Pieci tūkstoši is Latvian. Latvia to us means Pelmeni, fabulous little dumplings that can be bought in Riga for almost nothing. It also means Rīgas Melnais balzams, one of the most fabulously unctious drinks known to humankind. We spent an increasingly merry evening in the bar of our hotel drinking the delicious blackness, which I swear could cure any cold that ever dared come near!

Ötezren is Hungarian. Our Hungarian adventures got off to a precarious start – the Budapest police tried to fine us a large number of Euros for driving a Czech hire car on the wrong bit of the road! However, we then went to Szeged, which is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. I kid you not. It’s lovely: beautiful fountains, strolling around, sitting on the banks of the Tisza. The language is fiendish difficult though – we never managed more than a few words.

Viisituhatta is Finnish. Believe it or not, I have actually written a letter in Finnish! My cousin married a Finnish girl, and I responded to the wedding invitation in Finnish. Her family were really impressed, but at the same time highly amused, since I had got the cases muddled up and said that my cousin was married to my husband or some such error! Fantastic wedding though, and we enjoyed Finland so much in the summer that we went back in the winter – it was pretty chilly!

Beş bin is Turkish. Turkish makes me think of Istanbul, and an amazing weekend we spent there. Easyjet took us to an airport in the middle of nowhere, and our first challenge was actually to get to our hotel – an amazing journey, which finished by sailing across the Bosphorus. The whole place was magical – we were awakened by the call to prayer each morning and the hotel gave us Lokum (or Turkish Delight) for breakfast. How fabulous!

So that is what my 5000th tweet meant to me. Those are just a handful of the images that those languages conjure up for me. I adore languages, and I adore travel. I certainly hope to write more about my love of both one day.


  1. I really enjoy how you are able to bring your world to life. An enviable talent (in a good way).

  2. I enjoyed reading this entry SO MUCH. You've done so many friggin' awesome things!

    P.S. If Rīgas Melnais balzams cures colds, I need to get some!!! :-p

  3. Buck - huge thanks! *blushes slightly* I can't do it in pictures like you do, so maybe I have to make up for that with words.

    Robyn - Aw, thanks! We've been quite lucky in being able to do so much travel in Europe (I guess it's much harder on your side of the pond). Hope the cold is better by now!