There are some fundamentals when it comes to learning a new language, and this is one of them: telling the time in Lao. We're going to focus on timekeeping but also days and months to give you a more comprehensive understanding. First things first, the basics.
'What time is it?' ເວລາໃດ? veladai
'It's one o'clock' ມັນແມ່ນຫນຶ່ງໂມງ manaemn nung omng
As always, we strongly advise you to download Ling. Ling has built an awesome selection of 60 language courses, including Lao. And the great news for you, the learner, is that if you select a subscription plan, you gain access to not just one course but all the rest too.
If you've used apps like Duolingo and Rosetta Stone, then you'll have a good idea of how Ling works, so we won't bore you with that. However, we like to think we bring a little extra to the table because of the sheer amount of languages covered and our user interface's uniqueness.
To begin class, you just have to sign in, and then you will finish the class in little more than 15 minutes. Pick up and learn Lao whenever you want.
Lao is a Buddhist country, and the Buddhist calendar is closely aligned to the moon and the sun.
This is complicated, and we couldn't fully explain it in a short piece like this; however, know that the length of years can vary between 354, 355, and 388 days.
2 of the 3 years end in shortened solar years because the months are defined by lunar cycles that are alternatively 29 and 30 days long.
This is worth looking into if you're planning to spend a long time in Lao, particularly if you're in a business with many Lao workers. However, if you ask someone the year(and they see you're English), they'll give you the year in the Gregorian way.
The calendar also defines what days employees have off. Some big ones include Makha Bucha and Wisakha Bucha. These holidays are extraordinarily well-observed compared to holidays in the west, and on Buddhist holidays, for example, it is impossible to buy alcohol even from supermarkets and bars.
The Lao zodiac is still very popular, and the general zodiac itself is resurging in the west. It purports to tell you what kind of person you are in conjunction with the energies of the stars and planets.
I'm sure you're already familiar with the Chinese zodiac, i.e., the year of the dragon, etc. Lao has its own form of the zodiac with only minor alterations. In order, the years are rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, naga, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig.
In the year 2022, the current animal is rabbit.
Along with that are a further series of concepts, including avatar, which in the case of the rabbit would be 'female human.' The element is 'wood', and the guardian spirit habitat is 'coconut and silk-cotton trees'.
If you're interested in further researching the intricacies and the meaning behind Lao (and Thai) astrology, check out this article from the British Library.
As a native English speaker, I've realized (especially when visiting a country like Laos) that to speak English is simply not enough. It's impolite, and you don't learn as much about the people as you could.
I hope that list covered everything you wanted to know about telling the time in Lao. If you enjoyed this blog, think about downloading our app, which brings you fun and informative mini-games, as well as quizzes and SRS flashcards. Moreover, there is a leaderboard that allows you to compare yourself to other Lao learners.
There is a free version for Ling that gives you a taste of what to expect; however, for just $9, you can try the app for a month(the price goes down to $4.50 per month if you subscribe for a year.
Our lessons cover complex topics and aim to get you speaking immediately with simple vocabulary that helps you read street signs, eat lunch, and negotiate yourself through a soccer game with Lao locals. Lao people love to play soccer!
We also regularly update this blog, which accompanies the app. Here, we focus on Lao culture as well as learning Lao generally. Of course, this blog is free of charge, and it's our pleasure to bring it to you to supplement your learning. My personal favourite entries recently have been sorry in Lao and common daily vocabulary in Lao