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Josquin’s TAC 2014 - Катюша, Celts, 旅立ち

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Josquin
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Germany
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Studies: Japanese, Irish, Portuguese, Persian

 
 Message 201 of 227
14 November 2014 at 1:38pm | IP Logged 
FRIDAY, 14 NOVEMBER 2014

I am finally feeling better although my health problems still aren't entirely gone. However, I had an appointment at the doctor's early in the morning and felt so good afterwards that I immediately started studying.

Русский

As you know, I had a little motivational crisis concerning Russian for the last few months. I felt that Russian culture didn't really interest me any more and that I had lost my incentive for studying. I am glad to say that things have changed now and that I'm interested in Russia, its culture, and its language again.

I read three texts in my bilingual reader Ну что, поехали?, which were about the icon painter Andrey Rublyov, Queen Anna Yaroslavna, and how to correctly go for a visit to Russian friends.

Gaeilge

I'm on unit 15 in Teach Yourself now. It deals with the past passive (what Ó Siadhail calls the "autonomous form"), the past tense of "is", emphasizing words by putting them in front of the sentence, and some other minor points.

I'm still profiting from my former studies of Scottish Gaelic, as the grammars of both languages are very similar. Irish, however, is a bit more complex and irregular than Gaelic. On the downside, I still tend to pronounce words like they would be pronounced in Gaelic, especially very common cognates like "obair", "agus", "agam" and the sound combination rd/rt.

Português

And I'm back with Portuguese! I worked through the dialogue and grammar of unit 11 in Portugiesisch mit System, but I still need to do the exercises. The unit's main topic is going to the doctor and it teaches the pretérito perfeito composto, as well as the pretérito mais-que-perfeito composto. Also, it deals with the direct object pronouns -no, -na, -nos, and -nas.

日本語

I have finished the dialogues and grammar sections in Genki, although I will probably have to repeat one thing or another sooner or later. I have now started working on the kanji and reading section in Genki 2. It will probably take me some time to finish it, so I won't be able to move on to intermediate resources in the near future.

Edited by Josquin on 14 November 2014 at 2:20pm

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Josquin
Heptaglot
Senior Member
Germany
Joined 3280 days ago

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Speaks: German*, English, French, Latin, Italian, Russian, Swedish
Studies: Japanese, Irish, Portuguese, Persian

 
 Message 202 of 227
16 November 2014 at 3:07pm | IP Logged 
SUNDAY, 16 NOVEMBER 2014

I'm finally, finally, finally back to normal! Since Friday, I have returned to my study routine, which I hope to keep up until the end of the TAC. I probably won't be able to get a good placement in the 6WC any more, but I would at least like to reach some of my original TAC goals. There has been a lot of up and down this year, so I have a good excuse if I don't reach all of them. Nevertheless, it would be nice to reach some of them.

Русский

I read two more texts in my bilingual reader (about блины and the Золотое кольцо). Also, I watched two episodes of Кухня while reading the transcripts. The next episode (season 1, episode 10) seems to be missing on YouTube, so I will have to skip it. Anyway, this series is as hilarious as ever!

Gaeilge

I'm working on unit 16 in Teach Yourself now. It's about giving directions and using the imperative. TY has the strange habit to derive all verb forms from the present habitual. Usually the imperative singular is considered as the "dictionary form" from which all other forms are derived.

Additionally, I repeated some stuff from Learning Irish. While I can manage its structure and way of teaching better now, I still think Ó Siadhail could have done a better job. Well, working with TY gives me the advantage that I know a lot of things now, so Learning Irish only serves for consolidation and deepening.

Português

I'm on unit 12 in Portugiesisch mit System now. The unit's main topic is clothes shopping and it deals with the subjunctive and indefinite pronouns. While the subjunctive is very easy (you simply change the stem vowel, just as in Italian), I was surprised to learn that Portuguese also has double negation, just as Russian.

Well, I still love the charming, melodious sound of Portuguese, but I don't know yet whether or not I'll continue with it once I've completed my Langenscheidt course.

日本語

I finally started working on the 読み書き編 (Reading and Writing Section) of Genki 2. You get about ten new kanji per unit and one or two texts where they are used. Additionally, there are some exercises, which I mostly skip. Reading the kanji in context helps me to reinforce them and to repeat old kanji. The best thing is that only unknown kanji have furigana here, so you really have to memorize the readings.

I must have seen the kanji for 料理 or 旅行 a hundred times, but because they have always been accompanied by furigana, I never troubled to memorize them. The same goes for 勉強, which I have no problems to recognize as a compound noun, but when I saw the single kanji, I was clueless. So, working specifically on kanji for some time won't be the worst thing for my Japanese.

Wanderlust

I'm feeling wanderlust again, so I'll have my way with Hungarian and Swahili. I ordered resources for both languages from the library and I'll be able to collect them tomorrow. Then we'll see how seriously I'm going to study both languages.

Sziasztok! and Kwa heri!

Edited by Josquin on 16 November 2014 at 3:18pm

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chokofingrz
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 Message 203 of 227
16 November 2014 at 3:39pm | IP Logged 
Josquin, you can watch all the episodes of Кухня on www.serialkuhnya.tv - their official site. No need to miss one!
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Josquin
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Germany
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 Message 204 of 227
16 November 2014 at 5:00pm | IP Logged 
Thank you! That's a most helpful tip.
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Josquin
Heptaglot
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Germany
Joined 3280 days ago

2266 posts - 3992 votes 
Speaks: German*, English, French, Latin, Italian, Russian, Swedish
Studies: Japanese, Irish, Portuguese, Persian

 
 Message 205 of 227
18 November 2014 at 5:11pm | IP Logged 
TUESDAY, 18 NOVEMBER 2014

Everything's going smoothly at the moment, as it should be.

Gaeilge

I'm on unit 18 in Teach Yourself now. Unit 17 dealt with the notoriously complicated way of indicating directions in Irish. If a Dubliner went to Galway, he wouldn't normally say "Tá mé ag dul go Gaillimh", but "Tá mé ag dul siar go Gaillimh" ("I'm going westward to Galway").

Apparently, Irish has a whole set of adverbs indicating a location or a movement according to the points of the compass. For "west", this would be "thiar" ("in the west"), "siar" ("to the west"), and "aniar" ("from the west"). So, if you want to sound like a native Gaeilgeoir, you should better know in which direction you're going. Other topics of the unit were indirect relative clauses, the genitive plural, and the two prepositions "go/chuig" ("to") and "roimhe" ("before/in front of").

Unit 18, however, deals with the future tense, the one about which Gaeilge gan Stró simply said: "We're not going to focus on the future tense to the same extent [as on the present and the past tense] as it's not used as much as the other tenses". Thank you very much, that was very informative!

So, I finally got to learn the rules for the future tense thanks to Teach Yourself's trust in the learners that they might deal with such a seldom-used and strange grammatical phenomenon. Because, let's be honest, why in your right mind would you ever want to talk about the future? If you speak Irish, please stick to the present and the past!

Be that as it may, the future tense isn't as bad as Gaeilge gan Stró wants to make us believe, especially not for people who aren't scared by grammar. The only problem is that the f in the first conjugation ending "-f(a)idh" is pronounced h. Second conjugation verbs, however, take the ending "-(e)óidh" without any f's.

Of course, there are some irregular verbs, but their forms are very similar to their Scottish Gaelic counterparts. So, they're not a big problem for me. The only difficulty is "faigh", which once again needs some special treatment. It is eclipsed after "ní" instead of the regular lenition and it has a special independent form for positive statements: "gheobhaidh".

There are more grammar points dealt with in the unit, but the future tense is the most important one. I've got the feeling that I'm finally moving beyond the most basic stage in learning Irish, so maybe I've finally reached A2 territory. This was a very long and rocky road (to Dublin), but it seems I finally got there.

Magyarul

So, my new dabbling experiment is Hungarian. I already had a go at it one year ago, but this time I feel better about it. I'll use Teach Yourself Hungarian by Zsuzsa Pontifex as my main resource, maybe I'll complement it with Langenscheidt's Praktisches Lehrbuch Ungarisch.

So far, I've covered the pronunciation and basic greetings. The next things I'll have to memorize will be the personal pronouns and the forms of "lenni" ("to be").

Viszlát!
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Josquin
Heptaglot
Senior Member
Germany
Joined 3280 days ago

2266 posts - 3992 votes 
Speaks: German*, English, French, Latin, Italian, Russian, Swedish
Studies: Japanese, Irish, Portuguese, Persian

 
 Message 206 of 227
19 November 2014 at 10:43am | IP Logged 
WEDNESDAY, 19 NOVEMBER 2014

Русский

I wrote this text for the Christmas Challenge of Team Katyusha. I thought I'd also post it here. Hope you'll enjoy it.

Рождество в Германии

У нас уже ноябрь, значит остался всего месяц до Рождества. Западного Рождества, конечно! Русские (и вся православная церковь) отмечают этот праздник 7-го января, но в западных странах Рождество 25-го декабря. Правильно? Нет. В Германии Рождество – 24-го декабря!

Конечно, в Германии, как и в других католических и протестантских странах, 25-ое декабря называется «Первый день Рождества». Всё равно почти всем немцам 24-ое декабря важнее 25-го. Его называют «Священный вечер» или „Heiligabend“ на немецком языке.

Но этот священный день начинается как любой обычный, светский день: открываются магазины и много людей должны работать. Всё меняется в полдень. Магазины закрываются и люди идут домой. В три или четыре часа вся семья собирается вместе, пьёт кофе и ест торт. Потом все надевают праздничную одежду и идут в церковь.

В сочельник существуют разные богослужения: для детей, для взрослых и ещё ночное богослужение, так называемая «месса». Моя семья всегда посещает вечерню в пять часов. Конечно, сегодня есть много людей, которые больше в Бога не верят. Я не знаю, что они делают «Священным вечером», но есть многие люди, которые никогда не ходят в церковь кроме этого вечера.

После церкви все поздравляют друг друга «с Рождеством» и идут домой. Там они ужинают. Ужин обычно очень простой. Многие едят сосиски или шницель с картофельным салатом, другие карпа или гуся.

После ужина вся семья идёт в комнату, где стоит ёлка. Некоторые семьи поют рождественские песни, другие читают стихи, но, важнее всего, теперь время подарков. На Рождество немецким детям дарят самые большие и самые красивые подарки всего года. У них даже есть специальный календарь считающий все 24 дня до «Священного вечера».

Когда каждый получил свои подарки, начинается уютная часть вечера. Разговаривают, смеются и пьют шампанское до поздней ночи. В следующие дни навещают родных, хорошо едят и веселятся. 27-го декабря Рождество проходит и многие должны опять работать, а у немногих отпуск до Нового года.
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Josquin
Heptaglot
Senior Member
Germany
Joined 3280 days ago

2266 posts - 3992 votes 
Speaks: German*, English, French, Latin, Italian, Russian, Swedish
Studies: Japanese, Irish, Portuguese, Persian

 
 Message 207 of 227
25 November 2014 at 7:21pm | IP Logged 
TUESDAY, 25 NOVEMBER 2014

I spent the weekend in Berlin, so I didn't get to study. At least, I managed to read some Russian on the bus ride back.

Also, I was reminded of a realization I already had some time ago, namely that studying too many languages at the same time prevents me from making progress. I really want to improve my Russian and my Irish, so I put Japanese and Portuguese on hold. Additionally, I will have to see how serious I am about Hungarian. I haven't done too much in it by now.

Русский

I have started an offensive on Russian native materials. In Berlin, I bought five Russian books at Dussmann's: Преступление и наказание, Анна Каренина, Первая любовь, Русские стихи, and Свет в окне. That means I will finally dive into Russian literature! However, I'll start with a book I already bought one year ago (also at Dussmann's in Berlin): Игрок by Dostoyevsky.

So far, I have read the first few pages and it's surprisingly easy to understand thanks to difficult words being translated in the annotations. I really enjoy reading Russian literature in the language it was originally composed in! This was one of the reasons why I started studying Russian in the first place. I'm pondering whether to join the Super Challenge with a half challenge in Russian, but I haven't decided yet.

Also, you may have noticed that I have moved Russian to "speaks". I have doubts that I match the admin's criteria for doing that, but according to my own criteria I definitely speak Russian. I can hold conversations with my Kyrgyz roommate, I can watch Russian TV, and I can read Russian books. Of course, there's still room for improvement, but I'd nevertheless say I can speak Russian, not perfectly but comprehensibly. Probably, I'm in the no-man's-land between B1 and B2 now.
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Josquin
Heptaglot
Senior Member
Germany
Joined 3280 days ago

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Speaks: German*, English, French, Latin, Italian, Russian, Swedish
Studies: Japanese, Irish, Portuguese, Persian

 
 Message 208 of 227
08 December 2014 at 7:28pm | IP Logged 
MONDAY, 08 DECEMBER 2014

Okay, I haven’t updated this log for two weeks, so here’s a short account of what I have been up to. I have been rather busy, so I once again got to study much less than I wanted to. Nevertheless, I conducted the last Skype meeting of Team Катюша last week and I managed to make a little bit of progress in Russian and Irish. My Japanese, Portuguese, and *cough* Hungarian are still on hold though. I simply don’t have as much time as I would need in order to study five languages actively.

Русский

I worked through the first chapter of Игрок, using my own method, which is a mixture between L-R and Prof Arguelles's method for reading literature. I read several paragraphs in their German translation, then I read the Russian original, and then I reread the original while listening to the audio book. I must admit, reading interesting content is a very pleasant and fun way to study a language. Maybe, Steve Kaufmann isn’t that wrong about his study method after all.

Also, I watched some more episodes of Кухня. I’m on episode 12 of the first season now. Last but not least, my active Russian skills were tested during the Skype meeting of Team Катюша. We talked about much more diverse subjects than I'm used to talk about with my Kyrgyz roommate, so it was quite a challenge. Last but not least, because I was rather nervous.

While I was able to deliver coherent speech most of the time, I sometimes got stuck and made some stupid mistakes like confusing дома and домой, слушать and слышать, inventing the genitive form ошибких instead of ошибок, and totally forgetting the word писать, which has the elusive meaning "to write".

Well, it proved to me once again that I can speak Russian, but that I’m far from perfect. Probably, some tutoring sessions would be the optimal cure for my speaking problems, including nervousness.

Gaeilge

My progress in Irish is less spectacular. I worked through another two units of Teach Yourself Irish since I last wrote an update, so I’m on unit 20 now. That means I still need to work through one more unit in order to complete TY.

The main topic of unit 20 is the conditional, about which I once heard it was the "nightmare" of Irish schoolchildren. I don’t really understand why, as its formation is quite straightforward. The only problem I can see is that the conditional has fully conjugated forms instead of the usual "one suits all" verb form. So, the verb "mol" has the forms: mholfainn, mholfá, mholfadh sé/sí, mholfaimis, mholfadh sibh, mholfaidís. Once again (as in the future tense), the f is pronounced h.

I will have to repeat this unit before I can start working on unit 21, which will deal with the past habitual. Anyway, there will be a lot to get back to and to repeat, as TY is a really dense course. It's fully packed with grammar but there are too few exercises for practicing.

Well, I hope after finishing TY, I can finally tackle Learning Irish, which is great for students with some basic knowledge of Irish, but the total horror for absolute newbies. Maybe, I’ll also give Gaeilge gan Stró 2 another go. As I know most of the grammar already, I can concentrate on the conversational aspect of the course.

Edited by Josquin on 10 December 2014 at 11:00am



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