Prantsis wrote:If I remember correctly, "like a needle in a haystack" translates literally in Estonian. I think I saw it a couple of times.
Jah, nagu nõela heinakuhjast otsima
Prantsis wrote:I didnt know "nagu tikutulega taga otsima", but it doesn't seem to be equivalent. From my understanding, what you could look for nagu tikutulega is a rare first edition of some book, or a Malagasy speaker in Estonia, or a good plumber, or just an honest man (if you are Diogenes holding a lamp) etc.
Yeah, that makes sense.nagu miska ~ kui miska ~ nigu miška well, peacefully, undisturbed, comfortably
I can't find an exact equivalent, but it seems that if someone elab nagu miska
, they are living comfortably; things are going well for them and nothing is disturbing them or interfering with their comfortable life. If it's an inanimate object, it's working well without needing repairs (Google search turned up auto käib nagu miska
, for example). Nigu miška
is less common and probably a south Estonian version, but as usual, somehow the less common version ended up being the one I found first, because, well, that just keeps happening to me. nokk kinni ja saba lahti the solution to one problem creates another problem
Similar to "out of the frying pan into the fire," although in English it implies that the second problem is worse than the first one, and in the Estonian expression that's not necessarily true; it just means that you are no better off than before because one problem has replaced another. It comes from a story about a bird who gets his beak stuck in a freshly tarred roof, then frees his beak only to get his tail stuck, frees his tail only to get his beak stuck again, and so on. I was so delighted to come across this expression because I was already familiar with the story, but didn't realize there was an expression that referred to it.