Another day, another Mandarin class.

22 Sep

Remember two weeks ago when I was all up on my high horse due to the fact I was able to master the “u” and “ü” sounds better than my Anglophone classmates?

Yeah, well, that royally bit me in the behind at our second lesson yesterday.

We decided to ditch our last language school and go for another that seems a lot more professional and more in tune with Western learning. Less memorising of the pinyin chart and more coversational phrases.

So new school, new teacher and I just couldn’t get those sounds out again.

I was doing exaclty the same as I did the other time, pronouncing them just like I would in German but for some reason it was never right.

The funny thing was that the teacher even said that these sounds were easier for German and French speakers so what does this mean, I’m not pronouncing these sounds correctly in my own mother tongue??!

But overall (and on a less emotional note), we were very happy with the lesson. We covered the whole pinyin chart in an hour and then did the tones for 15min and the last 15min was learning our first phrases like hello, goodbye, see you next week, i’m sorry, it’s no problem, thank you and you’re welcome. Most of these phrases I already know, however I haven’t really been pronouncing them correctly.

We also came accross our first irregularity, conveniently found in Nǐ Hǎo (hello) where the tone is pronounced differently to how it’s written.

After the lesson we went for dinner and a few drinks. It’s funny … well, sad really… how pumped and motivated you are during and immediately after a lesson but five minutes later you’re sitting in a restaurant and you have no idea how to order four beers because you can’t remember the word for four, only the word for three and two and that’s hardly going to help. Thank God somebody had Lonely Plantet’s Guide to Mandarin in their bag. We eventually ordered our food and drinks, mostly by pointing, and then the waitress asked us something. We stare at her blankly, “uhmm…”, look at one another, and then one of us just shouts “Duì!” (correct/yes) just to give her some sort of answer.

Ah, yes, as said before, it’s a long road ahead.

 

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2 Responses to “Another day, another Mandarin class.”

  1. Ellen Schuett September 22, 2011 at 5:52 pm #

    Hi Mira, ist dieser Kurs auch nur 1x/Woche? Nicht mutlos werden, ich habe dir ja letztens erzählt wie lange wir in Thailand gebraucht haben bis wir uns verständlich machen konnten. Keep it up and it will come! Liebe dich!

    • miravakily September 22, 2011 at 9:59 pm #

      Ja, der ist nur einmal die Woche, aber ich werde wahrscheinlich im Oktober einen Intensivkurs machen. Zeit hab ich ja!

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