Hello = Gamarjoba
Thank you = modloba
What is your name? = Shen ra kvia?
Nice to meet you = Sosmonovia tqveni gacnoba
Mirza, the chummy, Turkish-speaking shoe salesman added another, indispensible phrase: Me kartuli yarvits. I don't speak Georgian.
It strikes me, encountering my fourth foreign language of the month, that there's a critical mass necessary to acquire new words. As you come to know a language, word by word its unique sonority and texture become apparent. Perhaps you can't read lips or hear snippets of conversation in noisy surroundings, but when someone tells you a new word, it will stick. Levani and i traded a slew of words - for example body parts. Arm, leg, knee, ear, nose, mouth. I remember none of them; the Georgian circuits in my brain haven't been constructed yet. But as words in any given language accumulate, it takes fewer hearings to learn new ones.
The Americans i met aboard night train #621 added one other comic observation: gamarjoba is a flexible word whose sonority gives no clue to its context. Unlike shalom, merhaba, or any of the other greetings i know, it can be used as a euphemism for almost anything - for example, "He smokes a lot of gamarjoba." Would you like some gamarjoba with that?