19
- June
2016
Posted By : talkingofchinese
Mistakes I’m happy to make in Chinese

Like any other foreign language learner I make LOADS of mistakes when I try to talk in my very broken Chinese.

Some mistakes are just bad – getting a tone wrong or messing up the pronunciation of a word – but there are others that I think are actually great mistakes to make.

Let me explain.

Yesterday I was trying to recount to my Chinese tutor a situation where I wasn’t being loud enough for someone to hear me but I didn’t know the word for “loud” so instead I used “noisy”.

She had a laugh, knew what I was trying to say and taught me the word for loud.

The reason this makes me happy is that in my long journey climbing the mountain of Chinese – I am still somewhere below that “breaking through the clouds” moment people talk about but constantly get addictive glimpses of the world above – I’m finally at a point where I can find an alternative (if very imperfect) way to say something rather than just asking “how do you say XX”.

These kind of mistakes make me realise how far I have come (unlike the mistakes where I mess up tones/pronunciation/fail to understand words I already know when somebody says them that make me feel like I’m taking 100 steps back to every 1 step forward!)

Happy mountain climbing!

The view can be pretty spectacular on the way up (on a completely unrelated note I am having snow withdrawels hence this snowy pic from Nozawa onsen to illustrate the beauty of mountains even when you're not on top of them yet)
The view can be pretty spectacular on the way up (on a completely unrelated note I am having snow withdrawels hence this snowy pic from Nozawa onsen to illustrate the beauty of mountains even when you’re not on top of them yet)
On top of the world in Hakuba. Just keep climbing...
On top of the world in Hakuba. Just keep climbing…ok enough with the excuse to upload snow pics – I’ll just go and set with my skis in the storage closet now!
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Comments

  • Beautiful snow pics.

    Congratulations on your progress in learning Chinese. There’s so much to learn about China, Chinese history, and Chinese culture. Studying the language gives you a window into all the rest of it. I really enjoyed my adventures in learning Mandarin. But that was a long time ago. Sadly I’ve forgotten most of it. Now two of my grandchildren are studying the language.

    • Thanks Nicki, Japan does have incredibly beautiful snow 🙂 I am pleased to hear your grandchildren are learning Chinese – maybe some of your Chinese will come back to you when you hear them speaking?

  • GORGEOUS PICTURES! And good job on your alternative words. I do that in Spanish all the time. 🙂

    Happy climbing!

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