It is a typical July day in the West Country – everyone is wearing coats, there are damp paw prints everywhere and it is raining.
And I have completed my first week of learning Romanian, or more accurately four days.
The resources I have (for now) are Teach yourself Romanian and some Pimsleur Romanian lessons, and of course some phrases on Surface languages (but more on that later).
I’ve never used Pimsleur before, and it is quite good fun, when walking a dog for example, but with a few caveats.
Firstly, the language used so far uses the formal register. My experience (admittedly talking over Skype) with Italian and Spanish is that the informal register tu forms of speech are far more useful.
Secondly, the first four lessons seem to focus on some bloke attempting to chat up a romanian woman. It is a bit, ahem, dated. ‘Hello miss. How are you?’. Perhaps a bit more imagination wouldn’t have gone amiss.
Thirdly, the pace is slow, and I am by no means a fast learner.
Bearing this in mind, it is quite entertaining, and almost therapeutic. You can buy the lessons in dribs and drabs from iTunes and so I might buy a few more, as an easy way of starting the language. Painlessly.
Romanian sentences. I’m a big fan of learning sentences as a way of increasing vocabulary and am in the process of adding hundreds to Surface languages – these are (I hope) being translated as we speak.