Experiences of an American woman who was married to a Serb.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Jebiga! An Old (But Good) Story

When I first met my husband, he barely spoke English, but our hearts spoke the same language ... or so I thought with stars in my eyes.

Luckily I knew a guy at work who was half Serb, who indeed had spent a year of his college life in Belgrade. So, one day I asked him. There was this word my beloved used in conversation with me nearly constantly it seemed. And I was pretty sure it was an endearment. Which is why I didn't feel shy about asking my friend about it in public, in an open office full of people.

"What's the word?" he asked. "Jebiga!", I said, "'Jebiga, Honey.' He says it all the time to me. What does that mean?" My colleague gave me a look, such a look that I began to feel a bit foolish. Finally he said dryly, "Well, it's not endearment."

Two years later, by which time I could "jebiga!" with the best of them, he danced at our wedding.


Shaz said...

Oh! I had to look it up, forgot about that. I'll have to add it to my vocabulary.

Pacovka said...

You know the story about the foreign student from Africa who was in Sarajevo and wanted to buy apples? He asked someone how you say "apple" and then went to the market and asked for "kilo jebiga." True!