When kath is blogging

Love learning a foreign language

Posted in Language by Katharine on March 25, 2009

I always love learning to speak a foreign language. Apart from the possibility to talk to people who you wouldn’t be able to communicate otherwise, it’s a nice way to learn a different culture through their language.

When I was in high school, I started listening to Japanese Rock. L’Arc-en-Ciel, Penicillin, Machine, Gackt, Lareine…… In order to know more about their music, I bought myself a book about learning Japanese and a Japanese dictionary. I taught myself some basic stuff with the book and started to translate the lyrics on my own. Then I started to buy expensive Japanese music magazine, and trying to make any sense out of those interview. I was happy when I can briefly understand what the interview was about. Then I took a Japanese class after school, for one year. Getting off from my school at 4pm, go to my math tutor lesson at 5pm. Then be at my Japanese class at 7pm with dinner in the classroom. But I had nothing to complane, I love every minutes of learning Japanese.

I always love the way Japanese sounds very polite. Even those announcement on the train sounds formal but soft and lovely. When speaking in Japanese, it’s inevitable to adopt their politeness. I also tend to smile more and nod my head more often.

Then when I was in college, I took one year of French, the romantic language. My teacher would told us her interesting experience in France. It was such a wonderful experience, even we were not sipping red wine in class. I remember one of the beautiful thing about this language was when my teacher told me “mother-in-law” is “belle-mere”, literally meaning :beautiful mother. I mean, how can you beat that?

Aat the end of every chapter, there are always this little story or fact about their culture. I always love reading those, and I was very interested in knowing those different custom and tradition. It was just so nice to know their way of living, very relaxing with a glass of wine and some cheese under the beautiful weather in southern France…and at the end of the year, I had a presentation about Japanese rock music, in French.

Currently I’m not taking any language courses, although I do want to learn some Italian. However, whenever I visit another country, I’d do some research and pick up a few phrases in their language. It’s useful when traveling. Even you won’t need to speak it, you might need to read the road sign and stuff with it, and it’s a lot of fun to me anyway. When I visited Holland few months ago. I memorize a few words like goedemorgen means good morning, kaas is cheese, dank je is thank you. Straat (street), gracht (canal) and singel always comes at the end of a street name, “en” seems to means plural. Of course I have a list of food item and other useful phrases stores in my phone with me, but I make sure I remember this one: Spreek je English? (Do you speak English?)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: