How to get by if you are stuck in an elevator in the Basque Country

What do people talk about when they are in an elevator?

You press the button to call the elevator. The door opens. There is someone with whom you have exchanged glances walking in the street but you have never talked with him.  

  • Egun on (Good morning)
  • Egun on.

(An ackward silence) 

You want to tell something but what?? What will you talk about?

I don’t know if in your country is like in the Basque Country.

Which is your jack of all trades?

Baseball? The best sport team in your State? Food? … Whatever it is…

… ours is weather.

When we don’t know what to say, we talk about weather.

  • The weather is nice today, isn’t it?
  • It seems it will rain…

This kind of trivial stuff.

And it works!

It’s a way to feel more confortable.

I guess that you do the same, don’t you?

  • Yes? You are like us. It’s nice!
  • No? No bother. Diversity is great!

Whatever it may be… when speaking to Basque people, you’ll need to be able to talk about weather. That’s fairly sure.

Now you will learn the basics for talking with someone when you are trapped in an unconfortable situation.

The first word that you need to know is ‘euri’ = rain. 

You know that for the most part of the Basque Country, rain is common.

So, you need to record, absolutely, these 3 sentences in your Basque brain.

Here we go.

  • Euria ari du = it’s rainning
  • Euria egin du = It has rainned (it rainned – meaning today)
  • Euria egingo du = It will rain

Despite of the rain, in my motherland  it’s not uncommon to enjoy many sunny days as well. Believe it, it’s true!

Therefore, you need to prepare yourself with some words and expressions for sunny weather. 

And remember to enjoy it on the Basque coast, you’ll love it!

Eguzki = sun

  • Eguzkia dago
  • Eguzkia egiten du = (both of them) It’s sunny
  • Eguzkia egin du = It has been sunny
  • Eguzkia egingo du = It will be sunny

I’ve got some Canadian friends, a couple who live in the south of France, Nancy and Mike. Once they told me that they went to Euskal Herria (Basque Country) and it was very-very windy. 

I hadn’t realised until the very moment they told me.

And likely it’s true. It’s true if we compare it with most of inland places.

So, you must remember this word too: haize (=wind).

  • Haizea egiten du = it’s windy
  • Haizea dabil
  • Haizea egin du = It’s been windy
  • Haizea egingo du = It will be windy

I’ll give you some other weather verbs.

Here you are!

  •  elurra egin = to snow
  • txingorra egin = to hail
  • hotz egin = to be cold
  • bero egin = to be hot
  • eguraldi ona egin = to be good (the weather)
  • eguraldi txarra egin = to be bad (the weather)

Now, you are ready!


You can talk with any Euskaldun about weather.

When you go to the Basque Country, don’t be afraid of unconfortable situations. Now you have the power! Tximistaren indarra! (the strenght/power of the lightening).

And if you are stuck in an elevator with a beret wearing man, stay calm.

You will be able to talk about weather until you are taken out from there.

After that, you will go to the pub with Txapelman (txapel = beret) and drink a txakoli or a sagardo and, maybe, you can change the subject of the conversation.

  • txakoli = Basque young white wine
  • sagardo = cider

So, I want you ready for the great challenge when you go to the Basque Country.

As you know great goals are achieved step by step. 

So, I give you a for step training to be ready when you meet Txapelman:

1.Read again all the Basque words and sentences  with their meanings.

2. Translate these sentences to English

  • Hotz egin du.
  • Goizean hotz egin du
  • Bero egin du.
  • Arratsaldean bero egin du.
  • Gaur euria egin du.
  • Bihar euria egingo du.

Do you need a dictionary? Try this one.

3. Learn more words and expressions about weather in my youtube channel. Watch this video.

4. Do some interactive activities: words and expressions.


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