This #bloganuary prompt is such an interesting one! I’ve really enjoyed reading different responses to it – with one elderly lady wanting to “write code” as a language which was really surprising but in a good way. She looks so frail and sweet on her blog profile picture, but could be a badass coder! Haha I love that.
My confession is that I’m Filipino but don’t speak it. I know how to curse in Filipino (interesting what ‘sticks’, isn’t it? lol) and how to say “Hello”, “Yes”, “No”, “Thank you”, “I’m full now”, “I’d like that”, “HURRY UP!” and “OMG”…but I wouldn’t be able to have a conversation or be able to read or write in “tagalog” which is the language in the part of the Philippines my Mom is from.
I like very much that so many Filipino words are tied into Spanish words, and that so many Filipinos have Spanish names. If I had listened in History rather than be fascinated by the buttons that undid themselves on my History teacher’s shirt every lesson (not in sexy or pervy way, he was an ‘old’ guy with a big beer belly and I would bet on how many buttons would pop open each lesson and give myself a high-five if I was right), I might know about the ‘Spanish takeover’ of Philippines and why/how we are all so closely bonded, but alas, I have no idea.
I was 3 when we arrived in Australia and I was the only black girl in my school. I was also the only girl with an AFRO for goodness sakes. I felt so incredibly DIFFERENT that I didn’t want language to also be a barrier. As soon as I could, I learnt English and promptly forgot about speaking in Tagalog. Mom said I would listen and understand her Tagalog but I would reply in English and by the time I was 4, had completely lost the ability to speak or understand Tagalog 😔 what a shame.
So, the language I’d most like to learn is Tagalog. Lucky for me, my Mom has remained fluent in it, so whenever we talk either on the phone or over Facetime, I ask Mom to teach me a new word. Mom is delighted with this and slowly, I’m learning.
Because Alun is Welsh, I’m learning a lot of Welsh, too. I can say a few complete sentences and can count 1-5 in Welsh.
The Welsh love singing as much as Filipinos do, so Alun is learning a song in Tagalog and I’m trying to learn one in Welsh. So far, I can harmonise to the Chorus of a Welsh song called “All through the night” which is really beautiful.
Alun and I went to Malaysia on holiday and stopped in at a local massage place to treat ourselves. I asked how to say “Thank you” in Malaysian and the lady massaging me was delighted that I asked. We spent the next 35 minutes saying “Thank you” in Malaysian to each other and laughing every time we did it. Because the massage lady taught me in her accent, I’d say “Kap ‘un kah” (probably spelt wrong, but hopefully you get the gist) in her strong accent and she’d burst out laughing and repeat it. It probably drove the rest of the customers and Alun nuts, but now I’ll never forget it…and if I’m going to learn a phrase in another language, “Thank you” is a great place to start *wink*
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