Nice to see you again, Meera! I'm glad you liked it!
A little more on what you can and can't say in Malayalam: There are a few other ways of saying (basically) "how are you" and "fine," much like English ("how's it going," "what's up," "what's new," "I'm OK," etc.). But Malayalam doesn't really have any words for "please," "thank you," "yes," or "no." Especially "thank you." If you want to thank someone, you'd usually do it in English, although if someone really
did you a big favor, you might find some way to express your gratitude in Malayalam ("you've done me a big favor!" or "I am so lucky that you did this for me," etc.).
Since there's no word for "please," the way you normally make a polite request is by saying, "You must do X." For example, if you wanted to say "please come by tomorrow," what you would literally say is something like, "Oh, you must
come tomorrow!" There are also formal verbs, but this is like namaskaaram
all over again; it's something you reserve for when you really want/need to show some respect.
There's no real word for "yes," either. There is one expression I've heard in Kerala, which does actually mean pretty much the same thing as "yes," but I've never heard my parents (or any Malayalees over here) say it. You could also just say aa
, like a lot of other Indians do. There's one more word for "yes" that you use only in response to certain questions. But normally, the way you say "yes" is by repeating the main verb in the sentence. For example:
A: Will you come to my house tomorrow?
B: Will come.
And "no"? Well, there's one word that means "isn't/aren't," and another that means "there isn't/aren't."
Sorry if that was too long! And here's one way to say "goodbye":
എന്നാല് ആകട്ടെ! ennaal aakaTTe!
Literally, 'Then let it be.' Leave-taking expressions in Malayalam are always idiomatic like that. You could also say just ആകട്ടെ aakaTTe
'let it be', or something like 'having gone, (I) will come', or 'I shall go', etc.
This part of my website should help with greetings and such, too: http://www.jaimalayalam.com/vegam_vegam_malayalam.htm