Welcome to yet another edition of Translation Golf! If this is your first time, there's some info for beginners at the end of this post.
And the winner is...
@VeAqui with 168 letters. Regardless of me having absolute authority, I feel obliged to defend this decision: the last sentence of the translation has caused some raised eyebrows in the chat. Even if this sentence was judged as unacceptable and replaced with the ungolfed "Mamá la llamó nieve, susurró." (longer than any bronze-bringing solutions), the translation would be of length 172, one character below the tied silver score of 173 letters. Congratulations.
Mumble @walen mumble grumble.
Being one of the fierce Vikings of the north and with fall turning to winter, I would like to propose something showcasing Finnish litterature. The text is an excerpt from the official English translation of Moominland Midwinter or Trollvinter in the original Swedish (Finland is a bilingual country: we speak both Finnish and Swedish). The protagonist of this children's book, Moomintroll has just unexpectedly awoken from his hibernation and is taking a peek outside the house. He is the first Moomin to ever be awoken during the winter.
He lost his breath, slipped and rolled over the edge. And so Moomintroll was helplessly thrown out in a strange and dangerous world and dropped up to his ears in the first snowdrift of his experience. It felt unpleasantly prickly to his velvet skin, but at the same time his snout caught a new smell. It was a more serious smell than any he had felt before, and slightly frightening. But it made him wide awake and greatly interested.
The valley was enveloped in a kind of grey twilight. It also wasn’t green any longer, it was white. Everything that had once moved had become immobile. There were no living sounds. Everything angular was now rounded. ‘This is snow,’ Moomintroll whispered to himself. ‘I’ve heard about it from Mother, and it’s called snow.’
Here is my attempt at a translation (I encourage you all to point out any errors you can find so that I can fix them. If the meaning is somewhat different it is because I tried to match the Swedish text. The source material to golf against is the English translation, though.):
Él perdió su aliento*, se resbaló y rodó sobre el el borde del techo. Asi se encontró Mumin indefenso en un mundo nuevo y peligroso y hundo profundamente en el primero lomo de nieve de su vida. Picó su piel velludo desagradablemente, pero mientras tanto captó su morro un olor nuevo. Era un olor más serioso que ningún que hubiera sentido antes y también un poco alarmante. Por otro lado le hizo vigilante y interesado. Una penumbra grise envolvía el valle y no era el mismo valle verde sino blanco. Todo lo que se había movido estaba ahora inmóvil. Todos los ruidos de la vida faltaban. Todo lo que había sido rudo era ahora redondeado. 'Es nieve', murmuró Mumin a si mismo, 'Mamá ha oido hablar des esa y se llama nieve.' (573 caracteres)
And would someone want to see the original Swedish text, here it is:
Han tappade andan, halkade och rullade över takkanten. Och så åkte Mumintrollet hjälplöst ut i en ny farlig värld och sjönk djupt ner i sin första snödriva. Det stack obehagligt i hans sammetsskinn, men samtidigt vädrade hans nos en ny lukt. Den var allvarligare än någon lukt han känt och lite skrämmande. Men den gjorde honom klarvaken och intresserad.
En grå halvdager låg tät över dalen. Men dalen var inte grön längre, den var vit. Allt som rörde sig hade blivit orörligt. Alla levande ljud var borta. Allt kantigt hade blivit runt. Det är snö, viskade Mumintrollet. Mamma har hört talas om den och den kallas snö.
The goal is to translate the given text to Spanish, using as few letters as possible, while keeping all the original text's (that is the English translation) meaning and concepts more or less intact.
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The English expression
he lost his breath is ambiguous. The following interpretations are accepted:
- Moomintroll was taken impressed by the snowy landscape and couldn't find words to describe it. (Quedó sin habla)
- Moomintroll was tired and hyperventilating: he lost his balance because of this. (Estaba cansado)
- Moomintroll had a physical reaction to the cold and/or was surprised by what he saw and/or the sensation of cold: he physically emptied his lungs.