New word learnt today, from a story by Mira (more on that later). Definition taken from Merriam-Webster‘s 11th Collegiate Dictionary:

abaya : variation of ABA
Main Entry : aba
Pronunciation : ə-‘bä, a-, ‘ä-bə
Function : noun
Etymology : Arabic abā
Date : 1811

1 : a loose sleeveless outer garment worn as traditional dress by men in the Middle East
2 : a fabric woven from the hair of camels or goats

Mira says that this definition is not very precise.

Kalifornia, get ready for RoZ and Aharoni

I placed an order for El-Al flight to L.A. on 26-APR, right on the Independence Day. You decide which is better — partying or going to the airport. Good hours — takeoff @ 1:00am, landing @ 10:45am. Now i need to get a visa (a separate story), rent a car, and find something to do there, besides letting Black Francis damage my ears.

English words learnt today from Catch-22

rumple : WRINKLE

jowl : slack flesh (as … the pendulous part of a double chin) associated with the cheeks, lower jaw, or throat

infundibulum : funnel, funnel-shaped

bloated : being much larger than what is warranted; obnoxiously vain

putrescent : ROTTEN

throb : to pulsate or pound with abnormal force or rapidity

humdinger : a striking or extraordinary person or thing

supra- : SUPER-; transcending

mess hall : food hall (military)

pungent : sharply painful

damask : a firm lustrous fabric (as of linen, cotton, silk, or rayon) made with flat patterns in a satin weave on a plain-woven ground on jacquard looms; a grayish red

… But it bears repeating

My Lithuanian teacher, Prof. Lea Sawicki told us a story about her meeting with William Schmalstieg, one of the co-authors of “Beginner’s Lithuanian”. “You see,” she said, “He’s German, but he prefers to be considered American, so he calls himself William instead of Wilhelm and often spells his last name Smallstig. When i met him a few years ago, he told me: ‘You can call me Bill, unless it hurts your Eastern-European dignity.’ He was really very nice.”

I just love this story.