Una Bola noun \ˈbō-lə\: A confusing word
As a self proclaimed ice cream connoisseur, I quickly learned the phrase for 2 scoops of ice cream after many visits to the local Bon ice cream shops located throughout the cities in the Dominican Republic. My favorite flavor, Bizcohcho Maccine, costs 90 pesos ($2.43) which is a meager price to pay for the organic, quality and did I mention, quite delicious ice cream. Many days after class, I walk across campus to the bon and say, “Dos Bolas de Bizcocho Maccine en un cono pequeño, por favor!”
What I soon discovered is that the word Bola, which for me means scoop, is also synonymous with the word for, “Lift,” as in, “Hey Morenita, let me give you a lift to your house!” One day, as I was leaving salsa class after 3 hours of reenacting, “Dirty Dancing Havana Nights,” in my head, I was stopped in the hallway by my dance partner who said to me, “A donde vas?! A casa? Quieres una bola?” (Hey where are you going? Home? Do you want a lift?)
Of course when I hear the word Bola, I immediately thought, ICE CREAM! so I responded, “Bolas de helado?! Claro!” My dance partner was confused of course by my response as he tried to explain to me that he was not referring to ice cream.”
He said, “A LIT!” in his best english. “A Lit to your house! not Ice Cream.”
-A Lit? as I enact with my hands the way you light a candle and pointed to my imaginary candle trying to depict light. A Lit? Why would I want a lit?
After playing pictionary with our hands trying to describe to each what we were trying to say and understand, it finally dawned on me, “A LIFT!!!” ohhh! He wanted to give me a lift to my house so I didn’t have to take public transportation! Wow! that totally went over my head. So He gave me a lift to my house, and I didn’t get ice cream that night. But at least I know, the next time someone offers me a Bola, it’s probably not Bizcocho Maccine…unless of course, it’s the Bon ice cream guy!