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Danes love talking about vejret (the weather). I recently had a chat with a guy who’d been spending some time down under — he was really surprised that the Australians he’d met hardly ever talked about the weather! That made him realize, he told me, just how much people ”up here” discuss things like regn (rain), sol (sun) og vind (wind). I guess that when you live in Australia and the blue sky is looking down on you every freaking day, you’ve got more interesting conversational topics!
Well, it’s not that people in Denmark don’t discuss things like food, or politics, or their love life. It’s just that you have to start the conversation somewhere to get to the crunchy bits. For that purpose, the weather is the perfect icebreaker. It is virtually everywhere, and you don’t need any experience or knowledge in order to have your say. Sunny, huh?
No point in Denmark is more than 100 km away from the sea, which gives the country its wishy-washy climate. Remember those ”skyer, der går og kommer”, right? Clouds coming and passing… Even at the height of summer vejrguderne (the weather gods – I don’t know them, but so’s the saying!) have plenty of surprises. Should I bring my bikini or my regnjakke (raincoat)? Or maybe I’ll need my halstørklæde (scarf)? That’s the kind of questions that might bother you in Denmark!
Some weather phrases to keep the conversation aglow:
Sikke det regner! (polite), Hold da kæft hvor det regner! (more vulgar, it literally means Shut mouth indeed how it rains!) – ”By Jove, it’s raining!”
Hvor er vejret bare dejligt i dag! ”The weather is just lovely today!”
Det er du også! ”And so are you!”
Har du set vejrudsigten? ”Have you seen the weather forecast?”
Ja, vi får sol på fredag. ”Yes, we’ll get sun on Friday.”
Hvordan bliver det i morgen? ”How will it be tomorrow?”
Det er bare en byge! ”It’s just a shower!”
Bare det ville holde op med at regne… ”I wish it would stop raining…”
Hvad er temperaturen? ”What’s the temperature?”
22 grader, tror jeg. ”22 degrees of Celsius, I think.”
Hvordan er vandet? ”How’s the water?”
Må jeg låne din paraply? ”May I borrow your umbrella?”
We’ll finish once more with a children’s song, this time from the tv classic Bamse og kylling (Teddy Bear and Chicken). They know just what to do to oust the bad weather:
Når regnen plasker på vores tage så plasker vi lige på hovedet tilbage med en rød haveslange så regnen bli’r bange…
”When the rain’s splashing on our roofs we splash right back at it with a red garden hose so the rain gets scared…”