Ok so if you know me, you know that I don’t do so well with foreign languages. At times I think they are fun and exciting, but I tend to suck at them. I can barely pronounce words in English let alone Armenian. I knew coming into Armenia that language would be one of my toughest challenges. I mean seriously google the Armenian alphabet, it’s a bunch of symbols that look similar and have sounds that I can’t even begin to describe how difficult they are. I mean there are four letters that make some sort of t sound, whether it be ts, t, t aspirated, and ts aspirated. Not to mention that most of the time the teacher will say a word one way, and you think you have it, and then you will ask her to repeat the word and it sounds like not only like a whole other world, but most of the time a whole new language!
My first struggle with the language was the alphabet, I couldn’t read a thing. It was so frustrating to be called upon to read in class and not even be able to sound out words. Now I have mostly overcome that but my new problem is the grammar. In Armenian you do not say in Los Angeles you say Los Angelesoom. Which in itself is not so hard, but the articles are also at the end of a word, and so are the cases to make a world plural so I always begin with a world and have no idea what the ending should be. I throw random A’s and I’s and Nra’s on every word hoping it will be right. I basically throw hail marys with my language and it’s starting to wear me down.
I mean I know I am only a month into this, but it feels like the more Armenian I learn the more Spanish I remember. I know so much more Spanish than I do Armenian! Granted I have learned a lot, but I just feel like such an idiot sometimes. I mean I can barely hold a conversation with a four year old. He asks me where are you going and I reply I go to school. Or even worse where were you and I answer, I am at school! Up until today we didn’t know the past tense.
So yes these are my language frustrations and they are all coming out tonight because tomorrow morning I have my first language interview. In my mock interview I there were three questions I couldn’t answer because I had no clue what the heck she was asking me. So instead of studying I am procrastinating and blogging! Ha!
Oh and in other news I just went out to buy cookies at the local hanoot. I bought ten cookies and began my walk home. As I was walking a little boy about 4 years old walks up to me and asks for a cookie. To be honest I didn’t even know the word for cookie so I could not figure out what he wanted. And then it hit me, this kid seriously walked up to me and asked me for a cookie. So I gave him one and quickly said good bye and moved on. About 20 seconds later a little girl came up to me and once again asked me for a cookie, so I gave her a cookie looked down the road and saw that this happens to be the time all the kids are out playing. I had nowhere to hide my cookies, as I did not bring a bag, so I returned home with 4 cookies =( I know I could have said no, and that is what Armenians would have done, but how do you say no to cute little kids?