Eesti Elu
Tänavalt / From the Street (H)ommiku ummik Eesti Elu
Eestlased Eestis 13 Feb 2016  Eesti Elu
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Tänavalt / From the Street
 - pics/2016/02/47048_001.jpg

(H)ommiku ummik
PHOTO
A fantastic reklaam (advertisement) for its witty play on words. Not Tere hommikust (Good morning), but Tere ummikust (Hello from the ummik).
If a drain is umbes, it's clogged. If it's umbne inside a room, there's a lack of fresh air. If there are a lot of vehicles on the road, which are hardly moving, it's a liiklus/ummik (traffic jam).
A few of my Estonian friends, who lived in Toronto for a number of years before returning to Eesti, did a funny direct translation and referred to the fenomen of the never-before-witnessed Canadian traffic jam as a liiklus/moos, moos being the jam you put on your pannkook. But that was a joke.
Since words beginning with an H almost always lose it in spoken Estonian – hobune (horse) sounds more like obune and hernes (pea) like ernes, then Tere ummikust is most certainly what you can hear in many parts of Estonia, especially in places where there is a more distinct regional dialect.
This is an ad for the Olerex bensiini/jaam (gas station) aka tankla, where you "tank" (the verb tankima) or fill your tank. It also serves kohvi to go (in a cup marked Teeline – Wayfarer) and certain ampsud (snacks / mouthfuls), such as the given breakfast sandwich. Looks like fried egg with peekon, lettuce and a slice of pickle on dark rye. Sitting on the passanger seat of a car. The text below reads: Naudi värsket ummikueinet! Enjoy a fresh "gridlock" meal! And in the hard to see box in the upper right: Õnnelik ummikutund 7.00-10.00 – Happy traffic jam hour 7:00-10:00. Must also be the time you can order the või/leib (sandwich).
The image of eating said hommiku/söök or ummiku/söök (breaky) while sitting in a liiklus/ummik, with the announcer on your car raadio shouting Tere hommikust!, to which you can shout back Tere ummikust! is perfektne. I wish I'd thought of it. Nagu rusikas silma/auku – fits "like a fist in your eye" or kümnesse! – "into (the) ten", as in Bullseye!
Riina Kindlam, Tallinn
 
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