This is probably a window into my inner word-nerd, but I have always been fascinated by terms that are unique to a particular language or culture.
Do you ever buy books that you never get around to reading? The Japanese have a word for that.
The Germans have one to describe feeling homesick for a place you’ve never visited
What about all of those times that the perfect, witty comeback come to mind — just a moment too late to be useful? The French apparently call that “l’esprit de l’escalier” or staircase wit.
And the British, it turns out, have a term to describe taking fruit from someone else’s property. It’s called scrumping.*
When we lived in San Antonio, a vendor at the local farmers market sold cactus fruit around this time each year. Prickly Pear cactus grow in Eastern North Carolina too but, as far as I know, no one around here peddles the fruit.
So that’s how I found myself engaged in a little pre-dawn scrumping, with the baby in his stroller serving as my unwitting lookout.