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First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby cwmgoch » Sun Jun 16, 2013 5:06 pm

Just wanted to share this because I'm still beaming about it! :D Went to the Tafwyl Fair yesterday in Cardiff and had my first ever conversation in Welsh:

I was perusing the Cymdeithas stall when one of the members came over to me and asked me a question that I didn't understand at all. I think my face showed my confusion because she then asked if I spoke Welsh. I then answered (yn Cymraeg of course!) that I had started learning and wanted to know more about Cymdeithas. She then asked me a question that I didn't fully understand, but recognised enough to know that she was asking what I already knew about them. So I told her that I had read a little and watched a documentary on S4C. She then gave me some literature and, considerately, dropped in the odd English word for the more advanced stuff so that I could follow what she was telling me. She asked me where I lived and where/how I was learning, which I told her. I then said (whilst gesturing back and forth to each other) “sgwrs Cymraeg … y tro cyntaf.” She was totally taken aback, which really pleased me! She kept saying: “Na! Y tro cyntaf! Na!” and then called over the other Cymdeithas member and started chatting to him. All I could understand was “... y tro cyntaf ...”, “Say Something in Welsh” … He asked me how long I'd been learning and I said “dau mis”. They were totally surprised at the Welsh I knew after only two months and were really, really friendly and supportive.

After working hard at the lessons on my own for the last couple of months, I'm really happy to have finally had a conversation in Welsh! And what pleases me the most about it is that it was totally spontaneous, so I hadn't practiced or rehearsed any set responses. Getting that first interaction under my belt feels like overcoming an invisible psychological barrier that was making me too nervous to attempt it before, but now I'm itching to have another go!

Also, slightly off topic, I read recently on the forum (can't remember who or where, sorry) of someone being berated in a class for 'incorrectly' using 'ti' instead of 'chi'. I definitely made mistakes yesterday, and one of them was the use of 'ti' with someone I didn't know. The outcome? She couldn't have cared less! She just seemed really pleased that I was learning – and speaking – Welsh, and if a language activist is happy to let these things slide, then surely that's a ringing endorsement to not worry about it! These things will sort themselves out with time, which is probably what she was thinking.

Diolch am ddarllen. :smile:
Please feel free to correct my Welsh. Currently on Cwrs 3 De, Gwers 4.
Dw i'n moyn llenwi'r we gydag amlgyfrwng hyfryd yn Gymraeg!
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby Tahl » Sun Jun 16, 2013 5:17 pm

cwmgoch wrote:I was perusing the Cymdeithas stall when one of the members came over to me and asked me a question that I didn't understand at all. I think my face showed my confusion because she then asked if I spoke Welsh. I then answered (yn Cymraeg of course!) that I had started learning and wanted to know more about Cymdeithas. She then asked me a question that I didn't fully understand, but recognised enough to know that she was asking what I already knew about them. So I told her that I had read a little and watched a documentary on S4C. She then gave me some literature and, considerately, dropped in the odd English word for the more advanced stuff so that I could follow what she was telling me. She asked me where I lived and where/how I was learning, which I told her. I then said (whilst gesturing back and forth to each other) “sgwrs Cymraeg … y tro cyntaf.” She was totally taken aback, which really pleased me! She kept saying: “Na! Y tro cyntaf! Na!” and then called over the other Cymdeithas member and started chatting to him. All I could understand was “... y tro cyntaf ...”, “Say Something in Welsh” … He asked me how long I'd been learning and I said “dau mis”. They were totally surprised at the Welsh I knew after only two months and were really, really friendly and supportive.

After working hard at the lessons on my own for the last couple of months, I'm really happy to have finally had a conversation in Welsh! And what pleases me the most about it is that it was totally spontaneous, so I hadn't practiced or rehearsed any set responses. Getting that first interaction under my belt feels like overcoming an invisible psychological barrier that was making me too nervous to attempt it before, but now I'm itching to have another go!

This is great. Llongyfarchiadau. And you definitely brightened her day: she's there because she wants to support the use of Welsh, and here you are. Well done. Onwards and outwards! :D
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby crystaltipps65 » Sun Jun 16, 2013 5:17 pm

Wow that is fantastic! First conversation with the big boys of the language! But what an amazing appreciative response you had! Da iawn!
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby Tahl » Sun Jun 16, 2013 5:23 pm

I forgot to write: Did you notice the crucial decision you made that led to the whole successful interaction? You didn't switch to English to tell her that you were learning Welsh. That's huge, and I've noticed in working on the Hwb/SSIW stand at the last two Eisteddfods that it's very unusual for people still in the first few years (!!) of learning. :cool:
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby Morgs » Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:13 pm

What a brill post - inspirational for all of us. Da iawn ti!!!
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby Gruntius » Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:29 pm

No going back now. Bendigedig. :seren:
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby SJ » Sun Jun 16, 2013 7:30 pm

Llongyfarchiadau! There's nothing better to boost your confidence that a completely positive reaction!

I hoped you enjoyed Tafwyl. There's plenty of other Tafwyl events happening this week and plenty more chances for your second conversation! :D
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby JeanB » Sun Jun 16, 2013 9:09 pm

What a brilliant achievement and after only 2 months!! :wow:
Llongyfarchiadau! :star:
Please feel free to correct my mistakes. Diolch!
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby lambiek » Mon Jun 17, 2013 6:33 am

Ffantastig! What a great achievement! :ardderchog:
Mae syniadau gwyrddion di-liw yn cysgu'n wyllt
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Re: First ever sgwrs Cymraeg (with Cymdeithas yr Iaith!)

Postby RobertBruce » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:32 am

After just a couple of months, that's pretty impressive going. Well done! :D

The Cymdeithas people might sometimes be a bit nutty, seeing issues where there are none on occasion, being unnecessarily confrontational at times, but they are unfailingly nice folks who value the enthusiasm of those who are learning or have learned.
No one ever drowned by getting out of their depth in a Welsh conversation.

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