Qonderdong, or the sense of bafflement at queasy situations that need resolution

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I have been in multiple situations where I have been in a completely baffled state, with no cognitive ability to make any sense of what I am doing, where I am going, or what’s next, yet I still need to soldier forward. The feeling usually takes over when I am that special combination of needing to HALT (hungry, angry, lonely, tired) but still have work to do, a destination to get to, or a task that I need to complete (i.e. travelling for 14 hours then having to change money in a foreign country before the bank closes).

In attempting to make a new word that best formulates this feeling, I’m using the word “qonderdong”, which, to me, is a onomatopeic mix of queasy, wonderment, and ding-dong. So the word will best fit if I am ailing, in awe of my situation (bad awe or good awe, either will fit), yet still needing to move forward. it’s a good assessment of how I might feel if:

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potential emoji representation of “qonderdong”

Example: While traveling as a solo female needing to get from Point A to Point B in a certain time frame, and not speaking the local language adequately, getting dropped off by the bus late at night in an unknown town. Then, following some other passengers to a ramshackle guest house on the main square, checking in using sign language and as few words as possible, climbing rickety stars to stay in a smallish room with peeling red paint, no mattress, very thin walls, and a trickle of cold water in the sink, with a sub-par electrical outlet in which to plug in a rapidly dying computer in order to set the alarm, which will then ring in 4 hours as a wake-up call to catch the next bus. “Qonderdong.”

Example: Walking through busy streets filled with chickens, street vendors, restaurants, and throngs of people but no easily discernible public toilets, then asking the local passers-by, and being directed to what may be described as “the world’s worst toilet” because it is a pit in the ground minimally screened by a wooden partition filled with maggots and flies, yet being so relieved to use said pit due to an incredibly overfull bladder. “Qonderdong.”

Example: Getting everything ready for a children’s party, including wall decorations, balloons, games, party favors, snacks, drinks, napkins, and cake with frosting and ice cream, and then learning in rapid-fire succession that one guest’s car just broke down, another guest can’t come due to a family emergency, and the last plain forgot that it was today instead of tomorrow, yet still maintaining composure and moving forward with the party, enlisting the help of a neighbor child and siblings. “Qonderdong.”

Certainly you get the sense of what I mean. What do you think? Does the word apply to any of your situations?

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Suggest some situations and tweet me your idea — I’ll think about the word some more and see if I can narrow down that specific combination of dread, anxiety, bewilderment, and obligation.

Written by

💚 make a positive difference: Lullabot Technical Project Manager, 🌎Green America Board,✨#femalefoundersleadtheway Founder, Pantheon Hero, Arcadia Ambassador

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