Next in an ongoing series on York County-isms
Awhile: Ex. “I’m going to the store awhile.” or “Dinner’s almost ready; wash your hands awhile.”
Literal translation: The closest I can come is “in the meantime,” or until something else is done. It does not mean “for a while.”
When you’re doing something “awhile” you’re doing it while something else is going on. While I’m waiting for my husband to finish mowing the yard, I’ll tell him I’m going to the store awhile. While I’m finishing supper, I’ll tell my daughter to go wash her hands awhile, meaning I want it done now, and not when supper’s on the table.
The thing is, when you’re a Yorker AND you’re absent-minded, like me, “awhile” usually turns into “I’m going to do this other thing while I’m waiting to be able to do this first thing, but by the time the first thing is ready for me to do, I’m going to have forgotten to go back and do it.”
You know… I’m waiting for the dryer to finish running so I can fold clothes. And I think “I’m just going to get the mail awhile.” But once I stop, talk to the neighbor, come in, sort the mail, pet the dog, do a hundred other things, the dryer has already been done for 30 minutes and now stuff is wrinkled…
I’m trying to collect all the York County phrases I know as part of this blog, but I need suggestions. Any others you can think of? Post comments below!