Question of the Day: If you could spend one semester studying any language at all (regardless of time or money constraints), what would it be?
This post was actually inspired by the book Eat, Pray, Love (author Elizabeth Gilbert) in which Liz herself embarks on an adventure to Italy, India and Indonesia. I am currently reading Part One and Liz explains why Italian is so beautiful and why she has this passionate desire to completely immerse herself in this language.
During my freshman year of college, I got to take Mandarin Chinese--and I have to say it is absolutely wonderful. I've always been surrounded by family members who instead speak Shanghainese, the primary dialect in Shanghai, China, so I thought that this would be an excellent opportunity to learn more about and of the #1 most popular language in the world (Spanish in #2 and English is #3).
Now, I love Mandarin as much as Liz loves Italian. And I am proud to say that I am now able to write, read and speak basic Mandarin. HURRAY!!! Sadly, the reading part is most difficult for me since it's not an innate skill. As I will be travelling to China next month (woohoo SO EXCITED) I definitely think I need to brush up on my Chinese (both Mandarin and Shanghainese).
So for today's Challenge, as part of my 30-Day
Tumblr Blog Challenge, I'm going to write letters in Chinese! Awesome excuse to practice, no?
First I'll show the letter I wrote in Chinese, and then I'll add the English translation below. Enjoy!!! Do any of you know Mandarin or Shanghainese (if so could you see if I wrote the letters correctly? hehe)
Day 25: Write a letter to somebody who is not in your state/country.
你好马? 我还有一个半星期就会去上海来看你。 我很开心! 我希望可以跟你去看电影和吃饺子。 我好久没吃上海采了。 我也要去看看你的办公室， 好吗?
My older female cousin:
How are you? There's still only have one and a half week left before I will go to Shanghai to see you! I'm so happy! I hope I can go with you to see movies and eat dumplings. I haven't had Shanghai dishes in so long! I also want to go see your office, is that okay?
Day 26: Write a letter to the person you miss the most.
虽然我昨天刚跟你打过电话了，可是我还是非常想你! 我在等到我们能一起去中国。。。没有很多时间了! 你想，飞机上面会有什么采是好吃的， 什么电影是好看的? 不要忘带好看的衬衫，裤子， 和鞋。 我们的家人都要看看美国的女孩子是穿什么呢.
Hello, big sister!
Even though I just gave you a phone call yesterday, I still miss you a lot! I am waiting for when we will get to go to China together...not much time left now! What do you think, what sort of yummy foods to eat and good movies to watch will there be on the airplane? Don't forget to bring pretty shirts, pants, and shoes! Our family members want to see what clothes American girls wear.
Day 27: Write a letter to your best friend.
你好! 你怎么样? 六月二十二号是我的生日，我会看到你。那天我要给你一张枝， 有你喜欢得歌写在上面。 你来的时候我们会做饭，看电视， 和吃蛋糕。你喜欢什么样子得蛋糕和饮料? 你告诉我， 我就会到商店去卖。请快一点给我发电子邮件!
My best friend:
Hello! How are you doing? June 22 is my birthday, and I will get to see you then. On that day, I will need to give you a piece of paper, which has a song on it that you like. When you come, we will cook food, watch television, and eat cake! What kind of beverages and cake do you like? You tell me, and I'll go to the store to buy them. Quickly write me an email please!
Whew!!! Goodness that was a lot of writing. It was great exercise for my mind though, and definitely helped me jog my memory, especially for some of the harder words/characters like cake, beverages and pants and grammar points such as 虽然, which means although.
If you know any other tongues besides English, feel free to write your comments in your respective languages! I'd love to learn how to say different phrases, though I can't promise I won't use Google Translate. ;) Share your languages with us!
P.S. Yes, I will be going to China next month and will definitely be blogging about my experiences--hopefully everyday if possible. I am SO excited and can't wait to share my adventures overseas with you all!