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Cristina’s travels TAC 2015 Team Pushkin

 Language Learning Forum : Language Learning Log Post Reply
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Solfrid Cristin
Winner TAC 2011 & 2012
Senior Member
Joined 3935 days ago

4143 posts - 8863 votes 
Speaks: Norwegian*, Spanish, Swedish, French, English, German, Italian
Studies: Russian

 Message 1 of 297
30 December 2013 at 10:18pm | IP Logged 
So – a new fresh year – and new possibilities, and a time to see what I need to do with my languages, and
how I need to do it.

Who am I? Language nerd, Norwegian genes, Spanish soul, railway man, mother of two girls, proud member
of the staff to two cats ( a gorgeous Ragdoll and a neurotic “blue turtle” with an apricot paw that we love to
bits) and an avid gardener.

I have been learning Russian on and off for three-four years, and I want to learn it partly because of my job,
partly because I have friends in Ukraine I need to communicate with, and partly because it simply is one of
the most awesome languages ever.

My level is a low A2 – and I would like to take it to a high A2 or dip my toes in a low B1. In the first four
months of the year I would like to finish Assimil Russian, and I would like to go through most of the TY
Russian Grammar. I still have a lot of ground to cover when it comes to basic vocabulary and very basic
grammar. And the reason why I focus on this for the first four months specifically is that in May the Super
Challenge starts again, and I would like to understand so much Russian that it would be easier to do the
necessary reading and watching by then. I spent from 6-12 minutes on each page of Russian reading –
understanding less than 10 % - and that is really too hard. I need to learn more Russian before I try again.
And then in May I will go for another Super Challenge and hope that this time around it will push me up to
where I need to be. The rest of the year I should be busy with reading and watching films. I also count on
doing at least two 6WC with Russian. And I am counting on my teammates on team Katyusha to help me
reach my goals. I also count on my April trip to get me some Russian practice.

No background. The reason why I want to learn it is because I hope to go to Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and
Turkmenistan in April, so I would like to know a little Uzbek before I go.

Level A0. To quote Manuel from Fawlty towers – I know nooothing. I do not have any major ambitions, I
would just like to learn a few tourist phrases, and be able to be polite to people. And I enjoy seeing the
influence from other languages, so it is intellectually stimulating for me. I have signed up as an observer to
team Yurukler, and I hope to benefit somewhat from their Turkish studies, and I also hope that it will not be
too tedious for them to listen to questions they may not be able to help me with. I know I will enjoy seeing
what they have to say about Turkish, which is on my list of languages that interest me, but that I do not study.

None. But I have been to Ukraine a few times, and expect to go again, and it would be interesting to see
whether I could learn it faster because I have some background from Russian. It has been on my hit list for a
couple of years, and I could not resist joining, even if it is just as an observer, when a team was formed. I also
look forward to see if their discussions on Polish, will help reviving the little Polish I knew and which now is
only activated when I am in panic mode.

Current level - A0 – goal: passive A0+. Again – my ambitions are very moderate. I am not even sure if I want
to go for any active skills, I think I will be perfectly happy if I can just gain some passive understanding. I fear
that any attempt of gaining any active skills would open the box of Pandora, and hurl my poor brain into all
sorts of trouble with my Russian. I have however joined team Sokoly and hope to get some inspiration for
some Ukrainian studies.

Four holidays, three Italian boyfriends, two seasons of evening classes and an unstoppable passion for
everything Italian. No partridge in the pear tree. No pear tree, for that matter.

Low B1, would like to reach B2. I would need to read and watch a lot of movies, and preferably speak. I have
no plans for a trip to Italy, but I’ll try to attack every Italian speaker I can whip up and speak Italian until they
pass out. I am also considering a Tadoku.

Two years in high school, a few evening classes, two week’s intensive course in Munich.

B1 would love to reach B2. Will probably take some evening classes, and participate in a Tadoku – possibly
even another half a Super Challenge.

ENGLISH, FRENCH AND Spanish (C2, C2 and C1)
They take care of themselves. I should get more practice in French, but a Super Challenge should do the

Ohhh. The big unknown. The only thing which is known is that there will be some dabbling. Heaven only
knows in which languages. Probable candidates would be Mandarin, Greek, Kazakh and Turkmenistani, and
my team mates may lure me into Polish and Turkish.

So what can I say but – a Happy New Year to you all! I look forward to 2014 which I trust will be a very good
year, and I look forward to following the logs of all my teammates.

Edited by Solfrid Cristin on 01 January 2015 at 5:37pm

5 persons have voted this message useful

Bilingual Triglot
Senior Member
Joined 2959 days ago

941 posts - 1308 votes 
Speaks: Greek*, Ancient Greek*, EnglishC2
Studies: French, Russian, Turkish, Modern Hebrew

 Message 2 of 297
30 December 2013 at 11:24pm | IP Logged 

Judging from your introduction you know very well what you want!

I'll try to lure you into turkish, although I won't complain if you choose greek.

Have a great 2014, C. !
1 person has voted this message useful

Winner TAC 2010 & 2012
Senior Member
United States
teango.wordpress.comRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4157 days ago

2210 posts - 3734 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, Russian
Studies: Hawaiian, French, Toki Pona

 Message 3 of 297
31 December 2013 at 2:54am | IP Logged 
Ukrainian, Uzbek, little temptress! I must stay strong. ;)

I've got a good feeling we're going to break some language barriers this year, and have a lot of fun doing it. Wishing you and yours a great New Year's celebrations, and the best of all possible starts to 2014!
1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 3460 days ago

890 posts - 1190 votes 
Speaks: Polish*, English, Bulgarian, Croatian
Studies: Slovenian, Macedonian, Persian, Russian, Turkish, Ukrainian, Dutch, Swedish, German, Italian, Armenian, Kurdish

 Message 4 of 297
31 December 2013 at 3:11am | IP Logged 
Uzbek! Awesome x1000. Good luck then.
Solfrid Cristin wrote:
my team mates may lure me into Polish

Not only team mates...
1 person has voted this message useful

Winner TAC 2011
Senior Member
Joined 4743 days ago

2150 posts - 3229 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Croatian, French, Greek, Italian
Studies: Russian, Swedish, Persian, Turkish, Japanese

 Message 5 of 297
31 December 2013 at 9:41am | IP Logged 
Happy (almost) New Year, Cristina! I wish you, as always, all the best in your language studies for the coming year. I'm particularly interested to hear about your Uzbek studies and possible trip to Central Asia! Удачи во всем!
1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 4394 days ago

636 posts - 708 votes 
Speaks: Russian*, FrenchC1, English, Italian, Spanish
Studies: German, Japanese, Hungarian, Sanskrit, Portuguese, Turkish, Mandarin
Studies: Ancient Greek, Hindi

 Message 6 of 297
31 December 2013 at 12:02pm | IP Logged 
С Новым Годом, Кристина! Счастья! Удачи!
1 person has voted this message useful

Solfrid Cristin
Winner TAC 2011 & 2012
Senior Member
Joined 3935 days ago

4143 posts - 8863 votes 
Speaks: Norwegian*, Spanish, Swedish, French, English, German, Italian
Studies: Russian

 Message 7 of 297
01 January 2014 at 10:55am | IP Logged 
@renaissancemedi: I know what I want, the problem is that you do not always get what you want:-) And I am easily lured, so I would not be surprised if the mere virtual proximity to the other Turkish students will make me fall into temptation - and as you know I absolutely adore Greek :-)

@Teango: I would not dream of leading you into temptation - but yea, i do hope we break some language barriers this year.

@prz: What, you want me to do Polish too? I would love to, it is just that I need to master Russian first, and that is no walk in the park:-)

@ellasevia: Thank you old teammate! Good to see you around!

@anya: Happy New Year and good luck to you too!!!


Happy New Year everyone!

Whenever I start a new language I try to find words I know from other languages. In some languages, like Turkish, I did not find all that many – a few from Arabic, a few from French, but most words were totally unknown to me. Fortunately Uzbek is a lot better – I recognize quite a lot of words from Russian, a few of Latin/Greek origin, and a few from Arabic. Given that my active Arabic vocabulary is about 20 words, it is a miracle that I found anything at all. And had I actually learned and remembered any Turkish, I would probably also have recognized a lot of words from that language, given that Uzbek is a Turkic language.

I would expect the Turkish and the Arabic words to be more used for things that have been part of Uzbek culture for a long time, and Russian and Western words to be for more recent inventions or items introduced in the last century. Sometimes it is a little hard to say whether a word comes from Russian, or whether it comes from a Western word, but those who sounds very close to the Russian variant I have classified as Russian, even if it originally came from another language.

I started out with uTalk Uzbek this morning, and in the category “First words” I was delighted to find the following old friends of Russian origin (and do not hesitate to tell me if I have guessed wrong when it comes to origin – I am here to learn:
Pivo (beer), vino (wine), kredit kartochkasi (credit card) , velociped (bicycle) , mashina (car), avtobus (bus), samolyot (plane), poyezd (train), vanna (bathtub), dush (shower).

From Latin/Greek /Western languages I found: Telefon, aspirin, taxi, passport,

From Arabic Rahmat (thank you), Salom (hello), qahwa (coffee),

From Persian: Non (bread). I actually thought this was a Hindi word, because naan is something I only know from Indian restaurants, but when I looked it up, it turned out to be of Persian origin. I then remembered having read somewhere that Persian words are common in both Hindi/Urdu, Arabic, Turkish – and evidently also in Uzbek. Although I am very interested in history, I am not familiar with the backstory here. Can anyone tell me why Persian words have had such a big influence on all these languages?

From Turkish; “suv” (water), sut (milk), bir (one), ikki (two), uch (three)

Turkish false friends: I was happy to find the words “xayr” which I recognized from the Turkish “hayir”, but of course the Uzbek word means “good bye”, where the Turkish word means “no”. Sooo not fair. And then the word “yo’q” which is so close to Turkish “yok”, but where the Uzbek word means “no”, the Turkish word means “there isn’t any”. Like I said: So not fair.

And then of course we have the words where you cannot help laughing, because a perfectly innocent word in Uzbek easily takes on another meaning in your own language.

“Ha” (yes) sounds like the Norwegian “Hæ”, which is the uneducated way to say “What?” and the word for bed “Yotoq” sounds like Norwegian “Ja takk” (yes please).
And I was happily telling my kids, while we were out walking, that in Uzbek “Yo’q” means “no”, and repeated it three times for good measure. Given that when you change the vowel just slightly, you get a word a lady would not say out loud, my kids went beetroot red, and hissed to me to quiet down.

I guess you would not have liked your mum to yell something which sounded like f*** three times either. Particularly when you are walking around in your neighborhood.

3 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 3767 days ago

3335 posts - 4349 votes 
Speaks: Portuguese*, Norwegian, French, English, Italian, Papiamento
Studies: Mandarin, Georgian, Russian

 Message 8 of 297
01 January 2014 at 3:49pm | IP Logged 
Looking forward to follw your Uzbek studies! I feel so envious. I won't be able to do
anything Turkic before 2015 or even 2016.

1 person has voted this message useful

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