Useful Swedish phrases

1. If you need to taunt a middle-aged or old woman, call her a "gamla skata" (gammler skarter). It literally means 'old magpie' but the equivalent English term seems to be 'wizened crone'.

2. The Swedish word for wasp is 'geting' (yetting) and translates as 'little goat'. Apparently it may have something to do with their antennae looking like horns.

3. For profound idioms, look no further than " Även en blind höna kan hitta ett korn " which I am reliably informed means "even a blind hen sometimes pecks a grain". This sums up well my scattergun approach to palaeontological research.

Soon I will be fluent in this fine old language.