Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Touching ice and snow and finding it hot

After the first sentence of Gabriel García Márquez's "Cien años de soledad" (1967) ends with Aureliano Buendía's memory of discovering ice with his father, it takes twenty pages to the end of the first chapter for the scene of that discovery to be narrated. When the boy touches the ice, he shouts out his surprise: “Está hirviendo” – "it's boiling". When my son Miles was just over one year old and had just begun to use a few words, we were in Kassel for Christmas at his grandparents' house, and it snowed. When we took him outside, he touched the snow and was also taken aback: "Heiss", he laughed – that is, "hot". (Andrew Shields, #111words, 16 February 2022)

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