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If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby ClareJ » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:27 pm

This may look like a scarily long post :faint: but bear with me...

On Tuesday I had a meeting with my local councillor who is a Gwynedd farmer, born and bred. When he arrived I summoned up my courage and offered him a drink in Welsh to which he remarked back ' Oh ti'n siarad Cymraeg!' - to which I kind of grimaced and said, 'wel, dw i'n dysgu', so he said he would 'siarad yn arafach' which was a nice start :smile: .

Anyway, a little later, in Welsh, he asked me how long I'd been learning and so I told him since last January and that I'd started when I joined the ladies choir. He then said to me - 'You don't have an accent'. Fearing some kind of mis-pronunciation I asked what he meant - he said that I didn't have an English acccent :-? . So I started gushing about learning with SSiW and the April Bootcamp (which I do at the slightest opportunity anyway :lol: ) and he stopped me and asked me to tell him in Welsh - which I did. He then shook his head and said that I had no accent and that to listen to me he wouldn't have known I wasn't Welsh! Well my grin would have put the Cheshire Cat in a corner as you can imagine :D !!

He then, slightly unfairly, reeled off lots of local people whom we both know and who are learning Welsh and said how they all have accents and how unusual it was that I hadn't; all thanks to SSiW I said!

So, whilst I am delighted to share my joy that my time spent learning has started to pay off (and the timing couldn't be better with Bootcamp in just over a week) this post isn't to show off/solicit any praise/crow - it's primarily to say a huge THANK YOU to Aran, Catrin, Iestyn and Cat for having produced such a wonderful thing. It's a huge compliment to the hard work that you've all put in to create and deliver such an outstanding way of learning. :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

Every time I stop and think, I am aghast that in just over a year I have learnt so much, and what is more I've enjoyed every minute of it (especially some of Aran's comments at the end of the lessons - I particularly like those at the end of the agreeing/disagreeing vocab unit, and the congrats at the end of course 1 seriously brought a tear to my eye).

I'm by no means the most confident speaker and I haven't perfect recall or a huge vocabulary beyond what's been covered in Course 1&2 and the vocab lessons, but to have such concrete 'proof' that the SSiW way works - I find hugely motivating and it's given me even more confidence to use my Welsh at every opportunity.

So, apologies for the rather lengthy post; Aran suggested I share the experience with you all and I hope that if you are finding it hard to make time, have stumbled over a difficult lesson or two or you are nervous about putting your toe in the water, this story may help you to keep going and siarad Cymraeg - you'll be glad you did!

Thanks to the SSiW crew again!!

PS Am counting down to April 7th for Bootcamp...

CJ

PS If I can do it anyone can - I have no flair for languages, failed my French 'O' level (can't remember much beyond je mapelle Clare and Ou est la gare?) and normally have the attention span of a gnat (no offence to any gnat lovers out there :wink: ) but learning with SSiW has kept me interested, motivated and if you listen and say everything out loud then hey - it definitely works!!!
Last edited by ClareJ on Sat Mar 31, 2012 10:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby Tahl » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:29 pm

Clare, do you mind if I move this post from the Members-Only section to General Chat? You'll inspire more people that way. :D
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby jstetson » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:54 pm

Nothing wrong with a little well-deserved crowing! Llongyfarchiadau i ti! You can't imagine how inspiring your story is. It's stories like this that have kept me going through a lot of rough spots. Thanks for sharing. :D
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby RobertBruce » Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:00 pm

ClareJ wrote:this post isn't to show off/solicit any praise/crow


If it isn't then it should be. Llongyfachiadau! Ti'n siarad Cymraeg! You deserve to be pleased and proud! :D
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby dinas » Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:12 pm

I'm really pleased for you, Clare; you'll have a mindblowing time on, Bootcamp. Can't wait to hear all your tales. :D
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby TygerC » Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:12 pm

I really enjoy reading stories like this. They make me grin like an idiot. :lol:
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby RedGreenInBlue » Fri Mar 30, 2012 6:26 pm

Tahl wrote:Clare, do you mind if I move this post from the Members-Only section to General Chat? You'll inspire more people that way. :D

Good move (literally), but why stop there? This is SSiW front page stuff; one of those "grinning as you read it" stories :D

Clare, you absolutely should crow about it, heb os nac oni bai (hey, @DailyWelshWords!). A comment like that about your accent, from someone like that, and the fact that having heard you speaking Welsh, he demanded that you continue speaking Welsh - well, does dim canmoliaeth well na hynny! Jyst gwych :D
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby Dee » Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:59 am

RedGreenInBlue wrote:
Tahl wrote:Clare, do you mind if I move this post from the Members-Only section to General Chat? You'll inspire more people that way. :D

Good move (literally), but why stop there? This is SSiW front page stuff; one of those "grinning as you read it" stories :D

Clare, you absolutely should crow about it, heb os nac oni bai (hey, @DailyWelshWords!). A comment like that about your accent, from someone like that, and the fact that having heard you speaking Welsh, he demanded that you continue speaking Welsh - well, does dim canmoliaeth well na hynny! Jyst gwych :D


This is definitely a story that more people should read (one email link coming up). It's brilliant Clare - and we're all going to have a great time at bootcamp! :party:
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby ClareJ » Sun Apr 01, 2012 10:55 am

Thanks everyone for your kind words and ongoing encouragement and support :D - I've said it before and I'll say it again (and again and again) - the SSiW forum is the most amazing place; the absolutely reliable and unselfish support, encouragement, advice and empathy (etc etc etc) is hearwarming, grin-inducing and downright fantastic!! (This perhaps sounds a little vomitous (my 7 year old niece's current favourite word :lol: ) but it's true!)

Diolch yn fawr iawn pawb. :clap:

Dee wrote:we're all going to have a great time at bootcamp!


Dee - We sure will - I'm really looking forward to it :D :D :D
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Re: If it feels a bit difficult sometimes, or a bit scary...

Postby Morgs » Sun Apr 01, 2012 6:58 pm

Well done Clare - really chuffed for you. You should feel really proud of yourself - SSIW gave you the means, by providing the best language course in the world, but you still had to put the hard work in and do the practices and pluck up the courage to speak to people. Well done!!!
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