Flem / Translaziun

I feel like a totally different person right now, compared to how ill and chilled I felt earlier this week. I have recovered from the flu and after I write this mail, I am heading out to the Laax fitness centre and pool. There is a small lake here which I spend more time sitting around versus swimming in (read: I have never swum in the Laax lake). Yet after a workout I will go to the bogn cuvretg (indoor pool).

Yesterday my friend Ueli and I went to Flem, a funny name in English yet the village is also known by its German name of Flims. We took the bus only three stops then walked through the forest en route to Flem. On the way through the mountain trail, we passed the beautifully bright turquoise Caumasee. See a livecam shot of the Caumasee. It was like a glistening jewel as we looked down upon it. Ueli then led me to the observation platform at Conn. We climbed two staircases and looked out over the Surselva, watching the red Rhätische Bahn (train) come and go from the Versam Station, and watched rafters on the green Rhine. We had a bird’s-eye view of the valley as we stood there on the platform, which jutted out over the mountaintop in midair. Ueli and I sat nearby the observation platform to have our lunch, and noticed quite a few people who were too scared to climb it.

The hike to Conn was one hour, and the walk to Flem from Conn was another hour. On past bus rides to Chur, the capital of the canton of Graubünden, I would pass through Flem but never had the chance to visit the village until now.

It is a busy one-road tourist spot both in the summer as well as winter, and it was buzzing with cars this afternoon. Quite a photogenic place, and boutiques lined the single road. The most famous building in Flem is das Gelbe Haus ( = the Yellow House), which actually used to be yellow, but is now white. It still retains the original name. This thick cube of a building is amazing to look at, and I bought a couple postcards to send out. Ueli and I took the bus back, then went to the Laax lake to relax.

I have three homework assignments this weekend, and two of them are to read and translate Romansch stories. I will include here a passage from one story and invite you to try to translate it. The English translation will follow.


Jeu entrel en combra. L’entira combra ei alva, ils letgs, las gardinas gie schizun las scaffas ein alvas. Igl ei fetg ruasseivel. Jeu audel mo in pip–pip–pip traso. Jeu siarel igl esch e mon pli datier. Igl ei cauld en cheu ed jeu stoi trer ora miu manti. Jeu mirel entuorn. Mia egliada dat sin in letg sper la finiastra. Leu eis ti pia! Ei gie clar che ti schaias zanua sper ina finiastra per saver comtemplar il contuorn e la natira.

The second of the two stories is longer. In it, the protagonist is being questioned by the police and we get into her inner thoughts. It is a harder translation than the one I included above, because the person being questioned uses the pronoun “ti” ( = informal singular “you”) for both the police and for the person she is trying to protect in her mind. I have to keep the “ti”‘s separate.

Yesterday night it rained, and it was overcast up till noon today. Now it is 13.00 and the sky is blue and only a bit cloudy. I stayed inside doing my homework and writing this mail until the sky got clearer. Now it’s time to go out and I will finish my homework this evening. The fitness centre is open till 18.00 and since I am a student of this language course, I am entitled to a discount for each visit. Later this evening I will go out to dinner with some friends.

I walk into a room. The entire room is white, the beds, the curtains and even the shelves are white. It was very peaceful. I hear a continuous peep–peep–peep. I close the door and get closer. It’s warm in here and I take off my jacket. I look around. I see a bed by a window. There you are! It’s quite obvious that you’d be close to a window so that you could look outside and admire the natural surroundings.

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