Learning Indonesian

I am sitting at the computer surrounded by lists of Indonesian words and sentences. This is not unusual because about anywhere I go in the house I will find something to do with learning Indonesian. I even carry lists of words, prayers and my testimony around in my pocket when I go somewhere so if I have the time and inclination I can do some reviewing.

I mentioned to Mary this morning that I was afraid that when it came to learning Indonesian my mind was like a strainer – where all the good stuff runs through and all I have left is the debris.

However I have finally reached the stage where I do not get frustrated – or at least not often – but just plug along learning what I can at the speed I can.

This morning I had to laugh when I got to the statement: ‘Bagi saya abjad Indonesia itu susah.’ The given translation is ‘The Indonesian alphabet is difficult for me.’ A direct word for word translation as far as I can tell would be ‘For me alphabet Indonesian that difficult.’

Part of the reason I laughed was because the grammar manual starts out by assuring the student that, except for adjectives and adverbs, Indonesian has basically the same sentence structure as English. When I originally read that I thought

Then I thought how hard it must be for an Indonesian to figure out our language with all it’s articles, strange phonetics, tenses etc. None of which exist in their language.

It should be an interesting 18 months.

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