Thursday, February 1, 2024

Street Sign Language Lesson XLIII

previous lesson | this lesson

Our first Street Sign Language Lesson of 2024 and we have a mixed bag of signs, six found in and around Bergamo and two signs (flagged below) seen in our ski outings coming and going to Passo del  Tonale. (For example, see Two Short Winter Hikes in Passo del Tonale, Italy and A Visit to Parco Naquane to See Paleolithic and Neolithic Rock Drawings in the Val Camonica.)


Attenzione vernice fresca

[1] ATTENZIONE VERNICE FRESCA
“Caution: fresh paint”

I love simple signs, written in typical all capitals that get to the point like this one does. Vernice is “paint or varnish” and is feminine so the adjective fresco “fresh or new” agrees with it by adding an “A”.

Cambiami alla casa

[2] CAMBIAMI ALLA CASA
“Change me at the register”

This is an example of a sign that catches me off guard for a few seconds before I realize what is going on. Ah, this is liquor and instead of taking the bottle to the cash register, you take this card and exchange it for the bottle. Theoretically, this avoids theft. The verb is cambiare and this is the imperative form cambia + mi = cambiami. This is an informal command. If it were formal, it would be two words mi cambi. No need to be formal with thieves.


Collare cattura larve processionaria del pino Collare cattura larve processionaria del pino

[3] Intervento di lotta alla processionaria, Collare cattura larve processionaria del pino
“Measure to control the processionary, collar for capturing the larvae of the processionary.”

We visited the Parco Naquane (see this post) to see petroglyphs and saw this sign on pine trees. It was a huge relief because we had seen these “things” around tree trunks for some time and wondering what they were. Here, park management thoughtfully put up a sign explaining what’s going on.

It’s about fighting the processionaria del pino – an insect / worm that infects pine trees. In English, we call it the pine processionary (Thaumetopoea pityocampa). It’s a moth that in its life stage as a caterpillar, overwinters in tent-like nests high in pine trees, and then can be found moving in nose-to-tail lines (“procession”), protected from predators by irritating hairs.

These collare or “collars” around the trees and trap the worms as they come down from their tents.

(We didn't seeing any petroglyphs depicting caterpillars.)


 La focaccia materasso

[4] La focaccia ‘materasso’
“Mattress focaccia”

Well, doesn’t it look like a materasso or “mattress”?


Salviette intime biogradabili per animali

[5] Salviette intime biodegradabili per animali
“Biodegradable intimate (baby) wipes for animals”

Some things are like flashing signs of how convoluted society has become and this is one of them. Baby wipes for your pets. But rest assured they are biodegradable. Salvietta is a “small napkin or towel”. Intimo or “intimate” is intimate with agreement – feminine plural – with salviette. Biodegradabile is one of those adjectives that can only be plural one way (making our life easier) with “I”. Enough said.


Se ci fossero problemi

[6] Se ci fossero problemi chiamateci al [redacted] o suonate il citofono
“If there’s a problem, call us at [redacted] or ring our bell”

I love polite signs and polite neighbors who use subjunctive! A neighbor in our condominium put this sign up after leaving some old cabinetry in the corridor that really wasn’t much of a bother.

I was stumped on the initial wording Purtroppo riusciremo a portare via l’ingombrante sabato, because you usually see purtroppo with the negative non. But if you translate purtroppo as “alas” it kind of works out, which loosely translates as “alas, we’ll be able to take away the clutter Saturday”.

This is what I expected to see: Purtroppo non riusciremo a portare via l’ingombrante fino sabato - “unfortunately, we won’t be able to take away the clutter until Saturday”.

Seriously, this is how I spend my time?


Shopper del Circolino Shopper del Circolino Shopper del Circolino

[7] Shopper del Circolino
“Circolino shopping bag”

Shopper is a shopping bag in Italian. Not the person. Lo shopper is typically made of cloth or some other material. It’s not the plastic bags you get. Those instead are called sacchetto or borsa di plastica.

You can fare shopping – go shopping. But as a shopper in English, it’s cliente or aquirente in Italian.

Finally: it’s always fun to eat at Circolino in Città Alta, a must stop for visitors to Bergamo.


Si prega di non buttare carta o altro nel pisciatoio

[8] Si prega di non buttare carta o altro nel pisciatoio 
“Please do not throw paper or anything else in the urinal”

(Sorry, gave up on showing all caps in signs....) We are back at Rifugio Malga Valbiolo (location) above Passo del Tonale. We’ve written about a different sign above these urinals before in Street Sign Language Lesson XL. This time, the sign caught our eye because of the translation of pisciatoio or “urinal”. The sign’s creator translated pisciatoio to “pissing trove”. Maybe they meant “trough”? Does “pissing trove” exist? I just had to check, in a private browser of course, and look at the images. No, it doesn’t exist. Next time we are there, I’ll remember to put a pen in my ski jacket and correct that spelling.

We’ve been skiing at lot at Passo del Tonale and this is our favorite place to eat. Even if we are kilometers way on other slopes, we always say, now lets boogie over to Valbiolo. Great pork shank and nice people. Go early for lunch, around noon or after 2 pm to avoid the crowds.


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