What? Episode 24? Where are Episodes 3-23? Well, dear viewer, they’re coming. I promise! But for now, as my time in Jordan draws to a close, I wanted to share a more up-to-date example of where my Arabic is currently. This episode was filmed just two days ago, on May 10th. Yousif and I talk in the garden of the Amman Jesuit Center, where I had paid his English class a visit. We talk a little about Iraq, and Yousif’s favorite place in Baghdad.
It’s amazing for me to look back and see the first episodes and this episode side by side. Even though I’ve experienced learning a new language before, it’s still so difficult to really feel the improvement while I’m here. We humans tend to want so much from ourselves without pausing to appreciate what we’ve accomplished. As I get ready to leave Jordan for now, I’m pausing to appreciate the progress I’ve made and, more importantly, the wonderful people like Yousif who I have met along the way. Thank you!
0:34 – Did you know Amman used to be called Philadelphia?
0:45 – I should really just stick to using the English name for the show!
1:03 – I just couldn’t get it right! Thanks for trying to correct me Yousif, but there just wasn’t hope. I mean, استطات ?? Come on, that’s way too many “t” sounds for one word!
1:30 – I’m really mixing up my traditional Arabic and Jordanian dialect Arabic here. What sounds like “fee” means “there are” or “there is” in Jordanian dialect, but kanna, which denotes past tense, would be pronounced kann in Jordanian dialect. This is pretty much my standard approach to Arabic… just using whatever comes into my head and hoping it makes sense.
1:38 – I should have added “al-” to both the words makan and mufuddel. Instead I omitted the one before mufuddel, hence the extra “the” in the subtitle, there to indicate the clunkiness with which I spoke.
1:51 – What do you think of my expert “river” mime?
2:02 – The Tigris! Part of me assumed that thing dried up with the Mesopotamians.
2:18 – It’s amazing what words you can NOT know after 108 days of learning.
2:58 – I am very proud of that sentence right there. Small victories, people!
3:41 – I totally thought he was naming a specific kind of fish, not saying “grilled”. Hence my next question… “is the fish big”?
4:00 – How odd is it that the same word, “fish”, in English, means an animal, and also means the means by which we catch that animal? “They fish in the river.” What a weird word.
4:18 – Yep, thats’ my “I’m not sure what you’re talking about right now” face.
4:50 – I don’t know why I called it “al-Baghdad” here… the name of the city is just Baghdad, not the Baghdad!