duck eggs

September 16th, 2007

Ages ago, I can’t remember when, I blogged about some hawker who wanders through the neighbourhood over our back fence calling out something that sounds for all the world like “Ay mañana!” Well, lzh figured out he was actually calling out “鸭蛋鸭蛋!” or “Duck eggs duck eggs!” I don’t know where he gets enough duck eggs to be wandering past several times per day, and surely he’s not coming by this way so often because he can’t sell enough duck eggs, but there you go, he’s not trying to remind us of tomorrow, he’s selling duck eggs to ensure his tomorrow.

2 Responses to “duck eggs”

  1. John Says:

    I can imagine the /n/ of 蛋 getting palatalised before the initial /j/ of 鸭 if the phrases are said without a pause between them. When I first came to China, I soon noticed that when people said 斤, it sounded like jing to me, since I perceive palatal-n as /ŋ/.

    If the hawker is also nasalising his vowels, it might make the phrase even more difficult to understand clearly.

  2. wangbo Says:

    Your explanation of the technicalities of this makes sense. Most hawkers are difficult to understand, I just enjoy how this particular hawker seems to suddenly switch languages and remind everyone that tomorrow is coming.