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message 1: by Jessica (new)

Jessica  (jessicaafrank) | 257 comments Mod
What are some or all of the things you are interested in or would like to learn about?


message 2: by Jessica (new)

Jessica  (jessicaafrank) | 257 comments Mod
One of the things I have recently become interested in is beading. I don't know a lot about it but I have tons of beads. The difficult thing is, though, that I very rarely wear jewelry. I did give it for Christmas.


message 3: by Elena (new)

Elena | 31 comments I've always loved learning languages. I've taught myself Spanish and now I'd really be interested in learning Russian... But I guess it's a bit too difficult to be learnt without a proper course!


message 4: by Rhonda (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:04PM) (new)

Rhonda (rhondak) Elena wrote: "I've always loved learning languages. I've taught myself Spanish and now I'd really be interested in learning Russian... But I guess it's a bit too difficult to be learnt without a proper course!"

Actually Russian isn't that difficult to learn. Like Hebrew, the hard part is memorizing the alphabet and Russian will take you about a week. Then I advise you to try and read a page or two, sounding out the words with the letters you know. When you can read the words easily, you are ready to learn phrases.
After that, you can pretty much start off learning the phrases that you definitely need. I like to know where bathrooms, hotels, restaurants and train stations are, in that order of importance when travelling.It can be a very beautiful language. I studied it in college to read Russian scientific treatises. Contrary to popular belief, drinking vodka while speaking Russian only makes you think you sound wonderful:)



message 5: by Yui (new)

Yui (ilovegrendel) i have always wanted to know about animal behavier


message 6: by Sarahcorn (new)

Sarahcorn (the-meowing-unicorn) | 14 comments Read Julie of the Wolves! It has a lot about wolf behavior!


message 7: by Jessica (new)

Jessica  (jessicaafrank) | 257 comments Mod
I would like to relearn French and learn Spanish for a start with languages. I hope to get to it someday.


message 8: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda (rhondak) Jessica Frank wrote: "I would like to relearn French and learn Spanish for a start with languages. I hope to get to it someday."

My college professor in Romance languages told me that he learned Spanish well by going to the cheap movies in Mexico. To me that would be a kind of torture although I did learn a middle eastern language, at least conversationally, by watching TV. OK, I had lessons too, but listening helps a lot. I just wish you didn't lose it so quickly.
BTW that program the State Department uses (it's on TV) is really good. I used one to learn Chinese before I went to Taiwan and it was amazingly useful even after just a month.



message 9: by Jessica (new)

Jessica  (jessicaafrank) | 257 comments Mod
I would love to learn Chinese. My son learned some Mandarin when he was very young (because he was in a local preschool in Singapore). Unfortunately, he has lost that skill.

Oddly, for years I could read French for many years after my college French classes. Slowly, that skill faded.

I think you are right--if you don't use it, you lose it. For example, I used to be quite good at sign language, but when I no longer needed it, well...not so good at it anymore.


message 10: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda (rhondak) I used to belong to a church that had a group who read sign language. The lady who signed the church service taught a class and I wanted to take it. Unfortunately I left the church over a disagreement of content first.
Yes, you have to find a use for things if you want to keep them up. I learned French so I could read Marcel Proust but I hardly recognize any of it any more.


message 11: by Jessica (new)

Jessica  (jessicaafrank) | 257 comments Mod
I've only read Swan's Way--and in English. I would love to have read it in French.



message 12: by Elena (new)

Elena | 31 comments I usually read the Italian translations of books, but I realize I often miss something. Besides, the translations are not always very accurate. So if I've enjoyed a book, I often get the original English edition too. Reading the originals is always the best thing.


message 13: by Jessica (new)

Jessica  (jessicaafrank) | 257 comments Mod
Elena wrote: "I usually read the Italian translations of books, but I realize I often miss something. Besides, the translations are not always very accurate. So if I've enjoyed a book, I often get the original E..."

I agree...sadly I'm only fluent in English.


message 14: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda (rhondak) I am only still good at early Italian.. like Cicero and Seneca and Virgil:)


message 15: by Elena (new)

Elena | 31 comments Rhonda, you'd be surprised to know that most Italians (most of us, in fact) nowadays cannot understand a word of what Cicero or Virgil wrote! They wrote in Latin which is completely different from modern Italian, another language actually-We now have no declinations, for instance (which can still be found in German, let's say), and the grammar is very different. I studied Latin for 7 years but still need a vocabulary to translate most stuff!


message 16: by Rhonda (new)

Rhonda (rhondak) Of course I was making a joke, but then modern English is difficult enough for most westerners when they read either Shakespeare or the King James Bible. Middle English becomes far more difficult, many of the spellings becoming quite creative and Old English, which I had to read for a semester long ago, seems like coughing and clearing one's throat.
I would think it about the same for an Italian to read both Virgil and Dante as it would someone of English cultural descent to read Beowulf and Chaucer.


message 17: by Jessica (new)

Jessica  (jessicaafrank) | 257 comments Mod
I love Shakespeare and Chaucer in their original language. Sadly, not speaking any other language (other than college French--Le Petit Prince), I haven't read many other original texts. I wish I knew Latin and I don't know why--except...well, it would be fun.

I found a copy of Chaucer at my father's house when I was there last time and I took it off the shelf. So beautiful to read, although I doubt I can speak the words. Now, I have to find my copy.


message 18: by Ellie (new)

Ellie I used to study Latin, and I really enjoyed reading Virgil in Latin (although I did need a dictionary and a lot of time per page to do it!)

Going back to the new skills, I am just starting to learn to sew...I have an old sewing machine, and have just started cutting out the pieces for a new dress, so im just hoping ill be able to wear it when Im done!


message 19: by Yui (new)

Yui (ilovegrendel) i'm really bad at learning new languages


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