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My brain hurt too mutt


OleKingCole
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Just had an hours very intensive one to one lesson.

 

Will I ever master this language. This was lesson 2 and I thought at least I'd be composing sonnets in Thai by this time not struggling over tongue twisters.

 

One phrase transliterated, of course, yin dee tee daai roo-jak to get all that coming out smoothly with the 4 different tones used in the right place had me swallowing my teeth at one stage, then to be told it is a very formal sentence and not really used in everyday conversation, put in to practice tone use.

 

I really do admire you guys who taught yourselves

But...what do I know?

 

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

- Voltaire

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Just had an hours very intensive one to one lesson.

 

Will I ever master this language. This was lesson 2 and I thought at least I'd be composing sonnets in Thai by this time not struggling over tongue twisters.

 

One phrase transliterated, of course, yin dee tee daai roo-jak to get all that coming out smoothly with the 4 different tones used in the right place had me swallowing my teeth at one stage, then to be told it is a very formal sentence and not really used in everyday conversation, put in to practice tone use.

 

I really do admire you guys who taught yourselves

 

yin dee tee daai roo-jak is one of those phrases that i heve never met up with. One that I have learnt but never heard (Pleased to meet you - for those that don't know)

 

It's a hard language to learn, I doubt that I will ever be able to converse in Thai the way that I do in English. I am just happy that I no longer think in English before speaking Thai except when I am grasping for the Thai words.

 

Yin dee is a good phrase to know. Many times Yin dee Khrup is a more appropiate response tahn the usual Mai Bpen Rai.

Chasing girls can be expensive

But it's more expensive if you catch one

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  • 1 month later...

Don't give up so soon! Thai seems to have a very annoying wall at the beginning (coming from English) because you need to learn how to make new sounds and tones, and learn a completely new alphabet, but I like to think it gets easier after that due to grammar/tenses being much less complex than some of the latin-based languages. Thai's are also very patient with farangs who speak like 1st graders :)

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Don't give up so soon! Thai seems to have a very annoying wall at the beginning (coming from English) because you need to learn how to make new sounds and tones, and learn a completely new alphabet, but I like to think it gets easier after that due to grammar/tenses being much less complex than some of the latin-based languages. Thai's are also very patient with farangs who speak like 1st graders :)

 

Oh don't worry, not given up at all. And never will

 

Still finding lots of it difficult though. many decades ago I started my "linguistic" studies learning latin. as a young lad with a fresh brain, it was easy and totally fascinating (I know - but it takes all types...) very formalised language, strict grammar rules and so on. It gave a good basis for learning French, Italian and later some Portuguese. Even got a smattering of some Bantu tongues though those were totally different structurally.

 

Thai is something else. But I have now reached the stage where my teacher gives me the Thai script for new vocabulary as I am a very visual learner and am picking up the reading very quickly, despite a brain that has aged considerably. She spent some time today explaining to me that I am making it much much harder for myself by forgetting the one cardinal rule. The whole point of learning the language is to communicate an idea or piece of information, not to attempt to construct a fancy complex sentence and get myself lost in the middle of it. For example when she asks me a question in "Free conversation" time I struggle away trying to understand every single word then spend a moment or two trying to construct a "full" complete sentence in reply. When what I should be doing at this stage is listening to her question picking meaning from key words that I recognise and giving a very simple reply e.g. chob krab, not Yes I do like to eat seafood, it is delicious etc Trying to run before walking, aiming at perfection and complexity before I start. Once I had grasped that (again) she started upping the anti and throwing a lot of what she called yabber into her sentences (words that didn't really affect what I needed to get at and many of which I did not know or understand). I then answered in shorter phrases and was able to add tags to take the conversation on. I think my problem has been I think too mutt and forget that Thai conversation does not require the more complex and strict grammatical rules demanded by written English.

 

That's all obvious stuff to most people, I know, I am often trapped I think, by my years of very formal education as a kid and then very analytical scientific training when a bit older. And also, as is obvious from my post, I do tend to waffle on...

Edited by OleKingCole

But...what do I know?

 

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

- Voltaire

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Although in many ways Thai is an easy language to learn it is also a different type of language with different sounds, long/short vowels as well as the tones of course.

 

Because of this I think that a lot of the 'learning' is actually just getting used to hearing and differentiating the new sounds. Keep at it in a steady and relaxed way and one day it will all just seem to fall into place. For me that took a couple of years.

         ความจริงเป็นสิ่งที่ไม่ตายแต่คนพูดความจริงอาจจะตาย                 

The truth is immortal but people who speak it aren't - Thai proverb

Karl's Thailand - My YouTube Channel

 

 

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The best advice I can give anyone learning Thai is to get hold of those kiddie's books that teach the Thai alphabet and short basic sentences. It doesn't take long to get a grip on the Thai alphabet and once you suss it out you can read basic things like menus and signs and your pronunciation of Thai words will be far more accurate.

 

The mistake many make when starting off is trying to learn complicated sentences like - Excuse me, I'm feeling unwell and have a fever, could you please tell me where the nearest hospital is? Learn the simple stuff first, just like Thais do - Uncle takes grandpa to the rice field to see the crow - the Dick & Dora stuff like kids learn back home. That's how Thais start off, you should do the same.

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The best advice I can give anyone learning Thai is to get hold of those kiddie's books that teach the Thai alphabet and short basic sentences. It doesn't take long to get a grip on the Thai alphabet and once you suss it out you can read basic things like menus and signs and your pronunciation of Thai words will be far more accurate.

 

The mistake many make when starting off is trying to learn complicated sentences like - Excuse me, I'm feeling unwell and have a fever, could you please tell me where the nearest hospital is? Learn the simple stuff first, just like Thais do - Uncle takes grandpa to the rice field to see the crow - the Dick & Dora stuff like kids learn back home. That's how Thais start off, you should do the same.

 

Maanii has eyes

Crow has eyes

Uncle has eyes

But...what do I know?

 

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

- Voltaire

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Crow has the best eyes, he can see the crab in the hole.

 

I taught myself to read Thai in about 2 weeks using those books back in the mid-80s.

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Crow has the best eyes, he can see the crab in the hole.

 

I taught myself to read Thai in about 2 weeks using those books back in the mid-80s.

 

For those who don't know these exciting books, there is an online version here It has all the pronounciations, translations etc and some exercises. An exciting read - a real page turner

But...what do I know?

 

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

- Voltaire

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Thanks for that link, I didn't know the lessons were online. I'll give myself a refresher course.

For anybody who thinks these lessons are dumb or boring just remember that virtually every single Thai in the country started off on page 1 of these lessons.

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Thanks for that link, I didn't know the lessons were online. I'll give myself a refresher course.

For anybody who thinks these lessons are dumb or boring just remember that virtually every single Thai in the country started off on page 1 of these lessons.

 

You'd hardly expect to start learning to read English using Shakespeare! The very repetitive and carefully graduated nature of the texts helps fix each bit in your mind before progressing, and they are not meant to be read cover to cover in one sitting! I like them as a learning aid

But...what do I know?

 

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

- Voltaire

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i used to stress over things quite a bit, especially when there is no word for word translation and you just have to accept that what you're reading/hearing is right.

 

Hehe, just remembered กินข้าวรึยัง gin kow reu yang. For example this "did my head" in", you ask the question have you eaten and you get given the response "ยัง" which at the time I just had memorized as "yet".

 

Have you eaten?

Yet.

 

what?!11 hehe.

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i used to stress over things quite a bit, especially when there is no word for word translation and you just have to accept that what you're reading/hearing is right.

 

Hehe, just remembered กินข้าวรึยัง gin kow reu yang. For example this "did my head" in", you ask the question have you eaten and you get given the response "ยัง" which at the time I just had memorized as "yet".

 

Have you eaten?

Yet.

 

what?!11 hehe.

 

What's happening here is they're shortening it and leaving a word out, which is understood by all Thais. The full question is "kin kow laew rue yang" - laew meaning already and yang not yet. To which the person will usually reply - "kin laew" or "yang". It does get confusing when you hear these things and words have been left out. I lived down the Deep South for years and they're renowned for shortening sentences. Whereas Thais in other parts will ask you - Khun Pai Nai Krap. Down Deep South they'll usually just ask "Nai-a" But you get the hang of that after a while.

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ah interesting, the cafe near where i lived had a southern woman who would cook and say ไหนอ่ะ I guess i must have gotten used to hearing it so never questioned it.

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  • 3 months later...

Just want to say how helpful and apparently friendly are the correspondents on this site and in particular this subject. So refreshing to read positive and helpful comments. I would like very much to meet up and talk more when I move to Jomtien next month

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