Wednesday, 20 March 2013

The young cat doesn't play rugby

    It's been over three months now since I started a language course, learning spoken Welsh. Driven by an interest in the language and the country rather than ancestry, my genes contain more German than anything from the other side of Offa's Dyke.
    So how's it going? Well, I have to say. That's not to say that I'm a competent speaker yet, after all there is only so much you can learn in three months. But there's a real feeling of progress, I can have and have had simple Welsh conversations that go beyond the stilted. Which is a testament to the effectiveness of the conversational focus of the course I'm using. Had I used some written courses I'd still be rote-learning verb tables without a clue how to pronounce them.
    It's a frustrating situation, being at this stage in a course. I have a lot of Welsh linguistic scaffolding, but still frustratingly little vocabulary to pad it out. Only time will help me there, no point trying to rush.
    Meanwhile it's re-awoken something that withered when I was at school, a joy in learning a language. Mental stimulation doesn't get much better.
    As with all such courses, when you have limited vocabulary you find yourself making unlikely sentences. I'm not entirely convinced how useful this is going to be, but it's undeniably true: Mae'r gath ifanc ddim yn warae rygbi.


  1. Glad it's going well! Will have to find time to do that course soon(ish).

  2. It's all Greek to me! Other than having to learn German at school I had no interest in learning another language and I wasn't that interested then! In some ways I regret that as there have been occasions where a decent command of the local tongue would have been very beneficial but they have been rare. I think it is good to learn another language if you've the inclination and it is of benefit to you. Not sure about Welsh though....LOL

    Shirley Anne x

  3. Are you having us on girlo, (I am guessing the female version of boyo)! That can't be welsh, you did not use a single "L" and there surely should have been three or four double L's in a phrase that long...

    Is cat slang for really cool welsh person who hates sport?

  4. I now suspect that even the young cats in Wales play rugby, rather well! My eldest brother went to Cardiff University over 40 years ago and never came home, he now considers himself to be Welsh, and yes he does speak the language.

  5. I can definitely recommend the course I'm doing, I don't think I'd have been able to come this far with a more conventional one.

    In this case it's as mch for the hell of it and the interest as it is to speak it. It keeps my mind occupied in the car.

    My command of Welsh isn't good enough to know any slang, sadly. Maybe among Jazz fans? :)

    I think if I lived there - or anywhere else not England for that matter - I'd immerse myself in the culture too. I'll never understand those Provence Brits who never learn French.