Yasin surprises us a lot. Sometimes he does that by teaching us a very concrete and close-to-home lesson on etymology or the history of words.
The Indonesian word for Mummy is ‘Ibu’ and at first, Yasin pronounced it as ‘Ebu’. We were delighted by his acquisition of a new word and at first all we could do was imitate Yasin. But he outwitted us all by pronouncing it spot on as ‘Ibu’ a few weeks later.
Peace be upon you or Assalamulaikum was first shortened by Yasin for his own convenience as ‘Ekom’. He has not outgrown this form of the greeting, but we are sure there will come a time when we will be thrown into fits of ecstasy when he says it as it is.
Yasin’s uncle has a very uncommon name and it is this which perhaps made Yasin call him by his first name as ‘Wiin’ instead of ‘Pakde’. I’m not sure how he took it when he heard Yasin call him that, but I am sure he would have been ecstatic.
An aunt, which we all call ‘Ode’ for some reason has been mentioned by Yasin many times. Another aunt, going by the name of ‘Niiik’ according to Yasin has also been part of Yasin’s vocabulary for quite some time.
Baba and mama are two words which he uses occasionally and affectionately.
I am sure he uses many more words which as yet we do not recognize and merely attribute to babbling. Maybe if you meet him some time, he’ll take a liking to you and show you all the words in his dictionary and more.