If a language has no inherent need for a term, can you coin one and make it native? (yes, borrowing loosely from the riddle.) Swedish culture and daily life has a slew of Swedish terms which just don’t translate conveniently into English because the concepts behind the terms don’t exist (or not to the same extent) in the native English-speaking countries.
Stockholm is smack dab in the middle of boat-up-taking (båtupptagning) season. Boat clubs all over the greater Stockholm area are buzzing with the community effort of the end of the boating season.We pulled our little Ocklebo T14 out of Lake Mälaren and put her in her cozy winter spot on Långholmen this weekend.
(technically the photo is from this spring’s sea-setting (sjösättning) time.)
Both seasons (spring and fall) there’s sjösättning and båtupptagning and I always search for a term to match the Swedish (last year’s blog entry about putting-boat-in-water (too awkward I’d say)) But as far as I know, there isn’t an all-encompassing term. Sure we describe it as putting the boat in and out of the water, but these land-lubbing and water launching (can’t say I like those optoins) activities are more seasonal rites of marine passage than a procedural chore.
The reason is that most people belong to a co-operative boating club. We the members run the club and all the practical chores and needs around it. We are the ones working the heavy machinery and precariously balancing several ton vessels teetering on their keels.
You can just as well keep your boat in a marina where they take care of all the boat uptaking and inputting (that could work couldn’t it?) but then why would you care what they call the mechanics of lifting and lowering (seems the right marina-based options) since that all goes on without your sweat, blood (I have seen it) and tears?
I’ve become very fond of our fellow boat club members. After being a member for about 9 years, the guy known to be grumpiest has become one of my best buddies. He’s a living example of two theories I have about Swedes.
1. The crustiest of Swedes on the outside are the gooiest of Swedes on the inside, you just gotta scratch through the surface.
2. You just have to invest the time to get to know Swedes, or more importantly, let them get to know you.