Six sad cicadas

Try saying that five times fast. Summer brings these boisterous beasts out aplenty in Korea. For OOFALWOians who have not heard the cicada's incredible song before, as we hadn't before moving to Seoul, it is a very distinctive high-pitched, vaguely metallic, almost electrical-sounding drone. And loud - no, loud doesn't quite cut it - how about cacophonous? The trees along the river path are teeming with the insects, and the noise is nearly deafening.

Using my newfangled language skills, I stopped a passerby to ask what the bug I was pointing at on a tree is called in Korean. They are called maemi, so all the way to school I practiced the sentence "Oneul maemi noraerul bureumnida - The cicadas are singing today" to awe my teacher. Turns out that Koreans don't say that the maemi are singing; instead, the maemi are said to be crying - which is a turn both more solemn and more poetic than the English.

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