Have you stumbled across some unfamiliar words on this site? Chances are, it wasn't too long ago we didn't know what they meant either. Whether they stem from the Japanese we picked up while living in Sapporo, or the Luganda we're learning in Uganda (OR are just useful phrases we latched onto while traveling across the continents), we've compiled them here for your reference. 

Abeno – a greeting when visiting a friend, usually used to announce your arrival at their home (Lusoga) 

Ainu – indigenous people who live in parts of Hokkaido, Japan's northernmost island

Allons-y – let's go (French)

Askari – a guard or stationed soldier (Arabic + Swahili roots)

Bicicleta – bicycle (Spanish)

Boda – a motorcycle taxi, commonly used in Uganda (Luganda)

Bon chance – good luck (French)

Bonjour – hello (French)

Braai – to grill, or barbecue (Afrikaans)

Bulungi – I am well (Luganda) 

Ça va – how are you (French)

Cage dweller – a person who rides in a car, vs a motorcycle, where you have nothing separating you from the elements ('Murican)

Car rapide – a colorful painted bus offering cheap transportation in Senegal (West African French)

Cho – a squatty potty, often no more than a deep hole in the ground (Swahili)

Gaijin – foreigner (although it can be a derogatory comment; Japanese)

Gaikokujin – foreigner (Japanese)

Ganbore – "Go for it!" (Japanese)

Gato – 1. son (Yolungu Matha); 2. cat (Spanish)

Gyoza – dumpling (Japanese)

Hangry – an emotion or mood of irritability, associated with hunger ('Merican) 

Hashi – chopsticks (Japanese)

Hiyayakko – chilled, silken tofu with toppings (Japanese)

Jitensha – bicycle (Japanese)

Jjaja – grandmother (Luganda)

Njeg ndiaye – a white bus that is a common form of transportation in Senegal. They are arguably reckless (not wreck-less!). (Woloff)

Kaiten Sushi – a sushi conveyor belt restaurant (Japanese)

Kale – OK, or it's OK (Luganda)

Katakana – a set of Japanese characters most often used to write "western" words

Kushiyaki – grilled vegetable skewers (Japanese)

Marche – walk (French)

Matatu – a privately owned taxis or mini-bus, commonly used for affordable transportation in parts of Africa (Swahili)

Mizu – water (Japanese)

Mzungu – a word used to describe foreigners. Often, it is mistaken to mean "white person," although a more accurate translation means "wanderer." (Swahili)

Nnyabo – woman, or madame (Luganda)

Ocha – tea (Japanese)

Onsen – public bath (Japanese)

Osiibye otya – a daytime greeting meaning 'how is your day' or 'how was your day?' (Luganda)

Posho – a traditional East African dish made of maize meal, millet flour, or ground cassava, boiled into a thick porridge (Luganda) 

Romaji Japanese – a written form of Japanese using roman letters and numerals. Romaji is primarily used between Japanese people and those who cannot read the traditional kanji, katakana or hiragana characters.

Sandoiichi – sandwich (Japanese)

Sashimi – sushi that consists of thinly sliced raw fish (Japanese)

Shikattaganai – "it is what it is" (a popular Japanese saying)

Shouganai – similar meaning to shikattaganai, or "it cannot be helped" (Japanese)

Shufu – housewife or mistress (Japanese)

Slope (or sloping) – to walk around or walk to (Ugandan slang) 

Ssebo – sir (Luganda)

Tamago – egg (Japanese)

Tatami – traditional woven grass flooring (Japanese)

Third-Culture Kid – a child who was raised outside of their parents' culture for a significant number of years

Tsukemono – Japanese pickle

Tugende – let's go! (Luganda)

Uketsuke – front desk or receptionist at a hotel or similar lodging (Japanese)

Yakitori – grilled meat skewer (Japanese)

Yukata – a casual, light-weight version of the traditional kimono (Japanese)