How to Say Happy New Year

Five days to go and its going to be 2009 already.  Despite the economic depression that hit the world late this year and the gloomy projections on growth  for 2009, there is still hope.  Moreso, these global situation will not stop us from spreading cheers and greeting each other for a blessed new year.

So much for the intro, i just wanted to share how to greet Happy New Year in Korean: 

새해 복 많이 보내세요 (Saehae bok manhi bonaeseyo).  This is literally translated as To send many new year blessings.  Somehow this is similar to how we always say Have a Prosperous New Year. 

If you just want to stick to the usual Happy New Year, you can say 행복한 새해 보내세요  (Haengbokhan saehae bonaeseyo).  This means to send a happy new year.

Merry Christmas

I feel so guilty not being able to update these past days… December is such a busy month in the Philippines.  It’s usual to attend to series of Christmas parties.

Since its going to be Christmas in a little while then let me say:

성탄절 잘 보내요! (Seongtancheol jal bonaeyo) literally means spend a good christmas but this is the common greeting during Christmas.

It’s also okay to say 성탄절 행복해요! (Seongtancheol haengbokhaeyo) now this means Happy Christmas. But saying Merry Christmas in Korean is of course acceptable too.  This is how it is written in Hangul 메리 크리스마스.

아주 (Aju) and 너무 (Neomu)

These two Korean words have the same meaning. 아주 and 너무 both mean very or too in English. For the longest time i am always inclined to use 너무 than 아주. Last Saturday in my Korean class, my 선생님 (seonsaengnim — yes this is how teachers are addressed in Korean) gave a tip on how to differentiate the use. 

According to my teacher 아주 is positive compared to 너무.  The latter tends to be negative and a bit exaggerated.  It may even sometimes sound sarcastic.  So when complimenting people it would be safe to use 아주 instead.