Home VocabularyHot topics This is your lucky day

This is your lucky day

by Bernard O'Shea

Great news! This website is much more popular  than I had thought. Although my website statistics tell me the number of views is well into five-figure thousands, I recently found out this was not the case. Far from it. After I had uploaded the previous post I called it up on the Twitter and Facebook feeds to check that it had turned out OK. And guess what? There was a notice on one of them saying CONGRATULATIONS! YOU ARE THE 999,999th VISITOR TO THIS SITE. THIS IS NOT A JOKE! Wow! I presume one of you got to be the lucky 1,000,000th visitor.

So, let’s start the year with positive vibes, even if it is in the company of advertisers who seriously do not like to tell jokes.

In French…

Luck is la chance, to wish someone good luck you say bonne chance, and to bring someone good luck is porter bonheur à quelqu’un, (bonheur being happiness). Once expression I hope you get to exclaim often is  C’est mon jour de chance! It’s my lucky day!

In Portuguese…

Boa sorte is good luck. Happiness is felicidade or alegria (put the stress on the penultimate vowel, the iprosperity is prosperidade, as is próspero, which can also be an adjective, hence um próspero ano novo, (a) happy new year!

In Spanish…

Luck is suerte, and if you say it exuberantly with a verbal exclamation mark it becomes suerte! Good luck! Hoy podrías estar de suerte = this could be your lucky day. And a lucky break is golpe de suerte. The words for happiness are, of course, similar to the Portuguese: felicidad, alegría.

In Italian…

Luck is fortuna or sorte and to wish someone good luck, you say buona fortuna! A lucky break is colpo di fortuna, and lucky you! or you lucky thing! is beato te! Happiness is felicità. Buon anno! is Happy new year.

In Romanian…

Luck is noroc, and to wish someone the best of luck you say mult noroc! To be lucky is a fi norocos (norocoasă in the feminine form). Happiness is fericire. Luckily is din fericire.

One of the books I picked up on a trip to Romania las Ghid de conversaţie Român-Englez pentru toţi (Guide to Romanian-English conversation for all)* by Maxim Popp, who was born in 1912, so it can be a little quaint, even though this edition was published in 2013 by Niculescu, which works in partnership with Oxford University Press. So I could leave you with Popp’s simple blessing – Toate urările de bine pentru noul an! (All good wishes for the new year) – or a more formal, one: Fie ca noul an să-ţi aducă numai bine fericire şi succese în toate proiectele tale! Beau in sănătatea ta! (May the new year bring everything good to you, happiness and success in all  you do! I’m drinking to your health!) That last sentence is persuasive, I’ll go get a drink.

* There are versions available in French, Italian, Spanish and German too. Details here.

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ladyofthecakes 06/01/2014 - 8:34 pm

Am I the 9,999,999,999 visitor? Am I, am I???????

Bernard O'Shea 07/01/2014 - 2:59 pm

Steady on! You are making my 9999999 look so insignificant. Let me bask in my glory for a while before you overshadow me!
Regarding what you said about the teaching, yes, it would not necessarily have to be Paris or indeed France. I think I would prefer a smaller city anyway rather than a huge metropolis. Madrid sound intriguing, I have never been there. I have a friend (a former colleague at an Australian newspaper) who teaches English there.

ladyofthecakes 07/01/2014 - 6:22 pm

Madrid it is! We’ll meet up for coffee and churros 😉

Bernard O'Shea 08/01/2014 - 8:33 am

Fair enough. I can never say no to coffee and churros, and there are heaps of places in Spain that I would love to visit, Madrid being one of them. Your post about getting by in language terms in Lisbon was encouraging. I didn’t realise those contractions were such an issue, but I remember they confused me a lot initially.

ladyofthecakes 08/01/2014 - 8:36 am

You’re on 😉
Well, they confused me, so I took the liberty of extrapolating from there.

Trish Whytock 08/01/2014 - 4:52 am

Hope 2014 brings you tons of love & so much happiness

Bernard O'Shea 08/01/2014 - 8:30 am

And you too! I feel it will be a good year. All the best to the Whytock clan!


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