The Chabacano Senorita and Amigo

A few hours ago, I come back from a vacation to my lonely and small apartment to find out that my stock of brown rice grew black crawling insects. I was horrified. I debated whether I should just throw the rice away. Having paid a premium for it though, I decided not to. I belatedly asked my dad about it and he said that I should simply wash the rice and remove the insects. He also said that those black crawling insects are called amigo in Chabacano. That prompted me to write this.

I don’t know about you but I’ve never heard the word amigo in used like this in Chabacano. Maybe it was because we consumed a lot of rice in the house and never had old stocked rice that there was never any opportunity to learn this word. Anyway, I wonder why these insects would be called amigo, they're hardly anyone's friends.

I remember a friend who grew up in Manila but whose father spoke to her in Chabacano, and so she could speak Chabacano to a certain degree of fluency, say that in their house, they call a small mouse a senorita.

Now I never heard the word senorita used like this before so I asked my friends about it, but they haven't heard this word used like this before either. The senorita that I know is a spoiled girl or the variety of banana that is smaller than the usual.

There are these words that you think are known to everyone just because you've used them all your life, only to find out that those words are only being used within their family. Maybe these words are like that.

What about you? Have you ever encountered the words senorita and amigo used like this? I'd love to hear from you.

3 comments:

  1. señorita: are used in Zamboangueño Chavacano Language as Ms. (young lady) and the small Banana fruit ^_^

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  2. Interesting. This reminds me of my sister who calls a stray cat "migo" short for amigo. I'm Cebuano, btw.

    Let me add, I've read your blog about Chabacanos in Ternate, Cavite City and Ermita but I have not read anything from Cotabato and Davao. According to wiki they have Chabacano speakers in that area. While I wonder if this is true, since I've been there and I've never met anyone speaking Chabacano. Hope you can touch this topic. TY.

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  3. Hi Anonymous. Thanks for your comment. I'm not sure about Davao but Im sure that there is a Chabacano dialect in Cotabato. It is very similar to the one in Zamboanga with some differences in the words used.

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