Moving to a new country poses many problems and challenges, but one of the most important things one must do is to try to learn at least the basics of the country’s language. Therefore, Mandarin has been my challenge this school break!
I have been taking Chinese lessons and it has been quite the challenge! Mandarin is not easy to learn. The tones are the hardest things to remember. But I am proud to say that I have been able to learn a few of the basic words ~ hello, thank you, how much is this, numbers and other easy words.
I have made it a goal of mine that wherever I travel I need to learn the basics. I did the best I could in the Czech Republic (another very difficult language to learn!) and most people understood what I was trying to say. The same is happening here. But Chinese are much more forgiving and patient!
I will be moving on to another country in August and I will be learning some of the new language before I get there! In the meantime, my Mandarin lessons continue and I will do my best to improve.
For those of us that travel, it really is so important that we make the effort to at least learn to say hello in their language. We would expect the same of foreigners coming to our country. Just remember how difficult it is for them to communicate with us. And we are never too old to learn something new!!
And if you are in China and are in doubt, just say “ting bu dong” ~ you will make most people laugh and they will realize you don’t know what they are saying! (It means ~ I don’t understand 😉 )