Thursday, April 19, 2007

nanage kannada tumba kashta

so i've been taking private kannada classes twice a week for a couple of months now, and i'm just not where i want to be. i guess it's a little slow-going. partly it's because i haven't devoted enough time to practicing between lessons. i can communicate pretty well with rickshaw wallas, but whenever anyone tries to talk to me, i'm lost. since i've been taking more buses, i've been feeling particulary frustrated by not being able to speak the local language. even in rickshaws, i'd love to be able to chat with the drivers (at least the few who aren't complete jerks). i miss living abroad and being able to converse with everyone, like in the DR for example; there's really no better way to learn about a place than to be packed in a moving vehicle with a bunch of loose-lipped strangers. here i can't even eavesdrop!

my teacher, prasad, is pretty good. despite his horrendous breath and tendency to get a little frustrated by my and patrick's lack of comprehension, he is an experienced teacher of kannada. so far, however, my best sentences are ones such as the following:

behind my house is another house. (nan mane munde innondu mane ide.)
in front of my house is a big tree. (nan mane hinde dodda mara ide.)
to the left of my house is a car. (nan mane balagade ghari ide.)
to the right of my house is a street. (nan mane edagade raste ide.)

now, when would i say these things, except to impress surabhi's parents? don't get me wrong, i love impressing surabhi's parents, but still. i think after my exam next wednesday (yikes!), i'll be able to study and practice more.

today i learned my favorite word: tombatombattu. it's the number 99. tombatombattu bottles of beer on the wall, tombatombattu bottles of beeeeeer...

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