Sunday, December 05, 2010

Culture: Japanese love autumn leaves!

I love the autumn leaves!
Heirinji by Rob.

The autumn leaves are beautiful!

さて、そんな美しい紅葉をどんな風に表現しますか? 「美しい」と一言でいっても、英語には様々な表現があるのです。
The autumn leaves are ....
...breathtaking!― 息(breath)を取る(take)するほど美しい。まさに”息をのむほどの”美しさ!
...a sight to behold!―目を見張るほどに! 美しい。んーうっとり。


The leaves are changing colour. (They are changing day by day, now.)

The leaves have changed colour. (They have finished changing, and are good to see.)

The leaves have fallen. (It is too late!)

I love looking at the autumn leaves!
Many Japanese people go to temples or to the countryside to look at the autumn leaves.
The leaves change colour every year in autumn and then fall to the ground.

Note: In British English we say 'autumn' and we spell colour with a 'u'. In American English they say 'fall' and spell color without a 'u'.

A: Have you seen the autumn leaves yet?
B: No I have not, not yet. But I plan to drive to Gunma on the weekend to see them.
A: That sounds wonderful, will you go to an onsen?
B: What's that?
A: It's a Japanese hot spring bath. It is a very popular thing to do in the fall. How about in your country?
B: We enjoy looking at autumn leaves back home too, but we do not make a big event of it.
A: You don't say 'fall'?
B: Well, no, I don't because I was brought up in the U.K. 'fall' is an American English word.
A: I see! Which is better to use?
B: I cannot say which is better! It is your choice! I prefer 'autumn' because it is the way I was taught when I was a child, it sounds more natural to me.
A: I see! Thank you! I learned something new!


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