dip and dive

kazuhiko fudaba

Senior Member
In the article of CNN: Jam-packed Colomian island preserves quite way of lif, there are sentences as follows.

Close quarters
Whatever the population (which is unknown as no census has been carried out for decades), Santa Cruz is a tight squeese.
About 115 houses are crammed higgledy-piggledy on top of one another, while elderly men with kind eyes and weathered
faces sit out on their chairs sipping beer, teenage boys line the streets nodding their heads and swaying to champeta beats
and young mothers chatter away at corner shops.
Nal dips and dives in and out of the winding alleys, ducking under washing lines and pointing out the various amenities
of the island --- .

Question) What does the bold part mean?

Thank you.

Kazu Fudaba
  • bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    His movements are hurried or accelerated, even acrobatic: As such they are likened to jumping or diving. Perhaps he is even jumping or hopping at times. It's more creative, suggesting dynamic motion more than simply saying he rushes or runs. And perhaps the child isn't in a rush to get somewhere, merely moving about quickly as children do.

    "Dips and dives" may seem repetitive, but that is the charm of alliteration.


    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I think they are making an analogy to a bird in flight. Some birds fly in smooth straight lines but some birds dive down and soar back up and dip and turn quickly. His movements are similar as he dodges through the obstacles in the alleys (which include people and clothes lines and maybe vehicles, etc.).