Going into Zac's yesterday to deliver the food I had collected I noticed a man in a duffel coat wandering down the road talking to himself. When I came out he spoke to me.
'Morning. Bonjour. Bore da.'
I responded throwing in a buongiorno for good measure. We had a brief chat about the the day's menu and then he said, 'Au revoir. Goodbye.' Then he paused, 'What's Welsh for goodbye?' he asked.
'Welsh is easy to learn,' he said.
'No, it's not.'
'Yes, English and Welsh are easy to learn.'
'Perhaps it's because I'm old I find it hard.'
He didn't argue.
I should point out - because I think it's interesting in regard to the ease with which we learned languages - that he was of Asian origins.
P.S. I looked it up when I got home. Goodbye is Hwyl fawr. Then I realised I didn't know hello either. It's Helo, or more usually shwmae.
And, incidentally, today in Wales is Shwmae Day. Apparently it was initiated in 2013 to promote the idea of starting every conversation with shwmae, to show that the Welsh language belongs to us all.
On Wednesday Daughter asked me to film myself saying shwmae for something they were doing in school. So here we are.