Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

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cjareck
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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby cjareck » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:49 pm

Radioclare wrote:отряд - in the context of vampires, this was the word used for "coven"

Strange since I know only military meaning for this word - "unit".

Radioclare wrote:ядовитый - poisonous
шея - neck. I realised towards the end of the book that I'd been confusing this with щека (cheek)

First one ist the same as in Polish "jadowity" (only without final й sound). In the second one we have only "y" as a wovel - "szyja".
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HE vocabulary: : 6976 / 10000


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Radioclare
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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Radioclare » Fri Jul 17, 2020 12:03 pm

13 July - Russian: 48 mins, Croatian: 113 mins
14 July - Russian: 120 mins, Croatian: 117 mins
15 July - Russian: 103 mins, Croatian: 84 mins, German: 74 mins
16 July - Russian: 36 mins, Croatian: 30 mins

It's been nice to have a week off work, even if it's mostly been spent at home :) Things are a bit better than when I previously had a week off in June, so I've been able to get outside the house a bit more at least. Yesterday my boyfriend and I spent the day walking outside with my family, which was nice. On Saturday we also ate out at a local pub for the first time since the lockdown began. It feels nice to be getting back to some version of normality :)

I said in my previous post that I wasn't going to start reading the next Twilight book immediately, but I failed at that plan :lol: On Tuesday I had a hairdresser appointment and that involved quite a bit of waiting around. I brought my Kindle with me because it was easier than carrying a book and I had all the Twilight pdfs on it, so I started reading 'Новолуние' (New Moon). This is probably my least favourite out of the series, but it's still fun to read. I'm 14% of the way through so far, which I count as 76 pages. I'm up to 22 books for my Russian Super Challenge.

After a bit of a break to read a novel in English, I've also started reading a book in German: 'Der Augenjäger' by Sebastian Fitzek. This book follows on from 'Der Augensammler', which I read on 5 January when I had a long gap between flights at Oslo airport. Like all Fitzek's books, it's a real page turner. I'm only 62 pages in at the moment.

Yesterday I finally finished chapter 8 of Colloquial Russian 2. It feels like each chapter of this book is taking me forever to work through, but I checked today and realised there are only actually 14 chapters so I'm over halfway through now. Chapter 8 was about past passive participles. Let's just say I find those rather difficult! There wasn't a huge amount of new vocab in this chapter though; I entered it into Memrise this morning and it only came to 48 words. I've finished learning the vocab from chapter 5 of the book in Memrise today, so ready to start the chapter 6 words tomorrow.

As you can see from my stats above, I've been spending quite a lot of time on Croatian this week too. I finished reading the BCS Grammar textbook on Monday, and then I went back through it to make a list of any useful vocabulary which I might want to enter into Memrise. I've captured it all in a spreadsheet, but haven't actually got as far as putting it into Memrise yet. Then I started a new textbook called 'Hrvatski u upotrebi'. This is a Croatian-language textbook, I think designed to help native speakers perfect their grammar. I've had it for years and did previously start working through it at some point, but gave up after a few lessons. I'm hoping to make more progress this time.

The book is divided up into 120 lessons, all of which are pretty short. I've completed two lessons so far and doing so has taken me quite a lot of time, but that's because I've been deliberating looking up the meanings of all the words I'm not 100% certain about and making a list of definitions in Excel. A lot of these are grammatical terms which will probably recur in future chapters, so I expect I'll have fewer words to look up and get quicker as I progress through. Examples of words which I've looked up are "suglasnik" (consonant) and "samoglasnik" (vowel); if pressed I could have guessed that each of those words meant either vowel or consonant, but not confidently identified which was which. So I'm making a list of definitions to put into Memrise and practise, in the hope of improving my active vocabulary.

The other thing which has been a major drain of time this week has been clearing my outstanding Croatian reviews in Memrise. I haven't done these for ages... maybe over a year... so when I logged in the other day I had in excess of 2700 words to review :oops: After several days of effort, I got that down to zero yesterday and will try not to let it get out control to that extent again :lol:
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Croatian SC books: 29 / 100 Croatian SC films: 41 / 100
Russian SC books: 31 / 100 Russian SC films: 27 / 100

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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Radioclare » Mon Jul 20, 2020 8:56 pm

17 July - Russian: 73 mins, Croatian: 44 mins
18 July - Russian: 82 mins, Croatian: 80 mins
19 July - Russian: 110 mins, Croatian: 71 mins, German: 95 mins

I really enjoyed my week off work last week :) It was back to work today, where I found 122 emails waiting for me. Luckily, only a handful of those turned out to be problematic.

Over the past few days I've started chapter 9 of Colloquial Russian 2. The theme of this unit is demographics and the main grammar topic is about numbers, which comes close to verbs of motion in being the worst part of Russian grammar as far as I'm concerned. I did an exercise over the weekend which involved writing numbers out in the correct case and I scored abysmally. As well as a general overview of numbers, there are also some fairly niche points in this chapter, like after which words the genitive plural of человек should be человек and after which it should be людей. I scored fine on exercises like this but it's quite easy to read a short grammar point like that, immediately do an exercise on it and score well. What I feel like I'm failing at with Russian is then retaining any of that information by the next day :oops:

I'm over halfway through the chapter now and the second part seems to be a lot easier. I just did an exercise on the use of нужен where I unexpectedly got full marks :) And there was an interesting text about Russian demographics. Apparently there are over 10 million more women in Russia than men :o It also said that over half of young people still live with their parents (though it didn't define what age was classed as "young") and that a quarter of them live with their parents even after they are married.

I'm five lessons into 'Hrvatski u upotrebi' now and learning lots of new words. This is good, but the nature of the textbook means that sometimes I'm looking up the translation of a word and finding that I don't know what it means in English either. As an example, yesterday I looked up the word "odmilica" and found it defined as "hypocorism". I then had to look this up and learn that it's a term of endearment. You learn something new every day :lol: Words like this there is absolutely no point me trying to put into Memrise and learn by heart, because if I've got this far in life without knowing a word in English then it feels extremely unlikely that I'll ever need to learn it in Croatian. But beyond extreme examples like that, I'm picking up some useful words.

I haven't made any progress with my films Super Challenge over the past week because I haven't been cycling. But I'm still going strong with reading 'New Moon' in Russian and I'm 26% of the way through now. I remember finding the book quite tedious when I read it in Croatian because there was just so much Jacob in it. But I'm well into the Jacob part now and he's not irritating me quite so much this time! I think I'm almost at the stage where I need to look up the word for "werewolf" in Russian :lol: In Croatian it is "vukodlak", so will be interesting to see whether Russian is something similar.
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Croatian SC books: 29 / 100 Croatian SC films: 41 / 100
Russian SC books: 31 / 100 Russian SC films: 27 / 100

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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Radioclare » Sat Jul 25, 2020 9:25 pm

20 July - Russian: 48 mins, Croatian: 9 mins
21 July - Russian: 56 mins, Croatian: 4 mins, German: 17 mins
22 July - Russian: 52 mins
23 July - Russian: 117 mins
24 July - Russian: 134 mins
25 July - Russian: 112 mins, Croatian: 53 mins, German: 31 mins

I haven't felt very energetic this week. The first day back at work wasn't too bad but then on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday I had to participate in mandatory technical training from 10.00 - 15.30 every day. Ordinarily this would have been in a classroom setting but in the current climate it was obviously on Zoom. Sitting on Zoom for that amount of time and trying to maintain an interested and engaged expression on your face is kinda tiring! I found that by the time it got to 15.30 and the training was over, I had limited energy to actually try and get a day's work done. And by the time it got to the evening and I'd finished work, I didn't have much enthusiasm left to start studying languages.

On Thursday night I went out and got slightly drunk to celebrate the conclusion of a particularly difficult work-related issue which has been ruining my life for about 12 months now :lol: When I got home, I did something I'm not proud of and watched the entire film of 'Twilight' in Russian :oops: It's really not a very good film! I watched it for the first time during my very first Super Challenge when I was struggling to find things to watch in Croatian. I couldn't actually find it in Croatian, but I somehow torrented the English version and managed to apply Serbian subtitles, then watched it with the sound turned off and reading the subtitles. The advantage of learning a major language like Russian is that I was just able to type the name of the film into YouTube and instantly find a (doubtless illegal!) version dubbed into Russian. I don't think I learned anything from watching it, but at least now I can say I've watched a film towards the films part of my Super Challenge!

What I have learned quite a lot from this week is reading 'Новолуние'. I'm 59% of the way through it at the moment and enjoying it way more than I expected to, given that I thought this was my least favourite book in the series. I've got to the part where Bella finds out that Jacob is a werewolf and it turns out that the Russian word for werewolf is "оборотень", so it bears no resemblance at all to the Croatian word or indeed to the Russian word for wolf (волк). In general there have been quite a few words over the past few chapters which I haven't known and have had to look up:

лужайка - This is to do with grass. Google translates it as "lawn", but in the context of the book it's a large grassy clearing in the forest. If you know the story, it's the place where Edward takes Bella to show her that he sparkles in the sunshine in the first book and then where she nearly gets killed by Laurent in the second book. In Twilight the name of this place was translated as "поляна" but in this book they're mostly calling it "лужайка" instead.

тропинка - footpath, trail
сцепление - clutch
шайка - a gang
дюйм - an inch
кровосос - a bloodsucker. Okay, maybe not the most useful item of new vocabulary.
дрожать - to shiver
стая - a pack, as in a pack of wolves
шрам - scar
яма - a pit, a hole in the ground. It occurred to me once I'd looked this up that I ought to have been able to guess it (Postojnska jama) but I didn't.

Apart from reading/watching Twilight, I'm not sure I've achieved much this week :oops: I did finish chapter 9 of Colloquial Russian today and I've been keeping on top of my Memrise reviews in both Croatian and Russian every day. That's maybe it. I'm glad it's nearly time for the 6WC to start again; I'm hoping that will give me a motivation boost!

My most listened to song this week is a new single called 'Rođen za suze' (Born for tears) by Goran Bare. I love his music but be warned, it's not very cheerful!



To balance out the melancholy, I've also been listening to quite a lot of music by Grupa Vigor, who sing the theme tune for 'Drugo ime ljubavi', the latest Croatian telenovela that I've been following. Their songs are a lot more upbeat and summery :)

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Croatian SC books: 29 / 100 Croatian SC films: 41 / 100
Russian SC books: 31 / 100 Russian SC films: 27 / 100

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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby cjareck » Sun Jul 26, 2020 5:14 am

In Polish we have also "jama" for a hike in the ground that is pronounced exactly the same. "Szajka" is more or less synonim for "gang" and "szrama" is a colloquial word for scar (called "blizna" in Polish). I thought that it is rather of German origin due to "Sch..." beginning.
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Mandarin Assimil : 22 / 105 Vocabulary : 834 / 2000

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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Just_a_visitor » Mon Jul 27, 2020 8:14 am

Radioclare wrote:I'm almost at the stage where I need to look up the word for "werewolf" in Russian :lol: In Croatian it is "vukodlak", so will be interesting to see whether Russian is something similar.

We do have sth similar: ВурдалАк (vurdalak)
...but it means vampire.


You may find it interesting to have a look here:
https://www.google.com/search?q=%D0%BF% ... e&ie=UTF-8
- here's Alexander Pushkin's poem Вурдалак from his cycle Песни западных славян, a short and, maybe, not very hard reading (I mean that very poem, Вурдалак). Most of the poems there (11 of 16) were translated from French - from Prosper Merimee's La Guzla.
The fact that a Russian poet needs a French medium to get to know some folklore of another Slav nation might seem a bit surprising - such an indirect way to go - but only for us and now. To see it in a true perspective, we should keep in mind that in the early XIX century for Russian nobilities (and Pushkin was one of them) French was their L2, if not L1 for someone.

But what really makes the story interesting and a bit funny is that Merimee's text was, actually, a fake: the Serbian original to the translation never existed.
Merimee feigned and publicised these folk songs in order to collect some money for his trip to the Slav parts of Austria-Hungary. He "did his homework" so well, preparing/reading for the future travel that, as a result, he managed to produce a fake so masterfully written, that it tricked the best Slav poets of the time, Russian Pushkin and Pole Mickiewicz.

Bonus, if you like: about Merimee's Guzla :)
In Russian, it's гУсли (plural, no singular)
https://www.google.com/search?q=%D0%B3% ... 66&bih=625
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hqY2e76f-oI

кровосос - a bloodsucker. Okay, maybe not the most useful item of new vocabulary.

It's much more often used when talking abt mosquitoes and the like - кровососущие насекомые.
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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Nogon » Tue Jul 28, 2020 8:35 am

cjareck wrote:[...] "szrama" is a colloquial word for scar (called "blizna" in Polish). I thought that it is rather of German origin due to "Sch..." beginning.


It is indeed, according to Wiktionary:
Etymology
From Ukrainian шрам (šram), from Polish szram, szrama, from Middle High German schramme, schramm (German Schramme).
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2020
: 1281 / 2000 Pages read in Afrikaans
: 1278 / 2000 Pages read in Dutch
: 617 / 1000 Pages read in Esperanto
: 4018 / 5000 Pages read in French

SC 2020/2021
: 46 / 100 Books
: 17 / 100 Films

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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Radioclare » Wed Aug 12, 2020 8:45 pm

Oops, I haven't updated my log for a while :oops:

26 July - Russian: 91 mins, Croatian: 52 mins, German: 220 mins
27 July - Russian: 32 mins, Croatian: 52 mins
28 July - Russian: 31 mins, Croatian: 8 mins
29 July - Russian: 35 mins
30 July - Russian: 58 mins
31 July - Russian: 37 mins
1 Aug - Russian: 34 mins
2 Aug - Russian: 44 mins, Croatian: 4 mins
3 Aug - Russian: 40 mins
4 Aug - Russian: 99 mins, Croatian: 3 mins
5 Aug - Russian: 67 mins
6 Aug - Russian: 30 mins
7 Aug - Russian: 34 mins
8 Aug - Russian: 32 mins
9 Aug - Russian: 31 mins
10 Aug - Russian: 31 mins
11 Aug - Russian : 46 mins

To be truthful, I don't have very much progress to report. As you can see from the stats above, I've mostly been doing the bare minimum each day. There are a few reasons for this. Work was crazy during the final week of July, with the result that I felt pretty worn out in the evenings and devoid of much enthusiasm to do anything. I had the first week of August booked off as holiday (that was when I was originally supposed to be going to Latvia). At the last minute my boyfriend and I decided to use the time to Scotland, so the past week has mostly been spent doing long drives and getting a lot of steps, all in beautiful scenery. It was a great week and really nice to finally get away from home for a bit, but not really conducive to doing much studying. I got back to work (178 emails!) on Monday and I was hoping to be motivated by the 6WC to get back into studying, but so far the weather has been far too hot for me to find the required motivation. It was 30 degrees in my study today so let's just say I'm really missing the office air conditioning :cry:

I have kept up my streak but a lot of days recently have just been clearing Memrise reviews for long enough to hit the required 30 minutes. The upside of this that I've caught up on my Memrise backlog and learned all the vocab up to the end of chapter 8 of Colloquial Russian 2. I'm partway through the vocab for chapter 9.

In terms of the content of the textbook itself, I'm partway through chapter 10. I think I've probably only opened it one within the past two weeks though, so I can't even 100% remember what the theme of the chapter is :oops:

My biggest (only?) achievement is that I've finished reading 'Новолуние' (New Moon) in Russian. That was 543 pages and takes me to 31 books for my Russian reading Super Challenge. I haven't started a new Croatian novel yet so my Croatian reading Super Challenge has stagnated at 14 books.

My film Super Challenges are also going nowhere fast because I've got into the habit of only watching TV when I'm cycling, but then it's been too hot to cycle. So I'm on 15 films for Russian and 27 films for Croatian, which is probably the same as last time I reported.

Hopefully next time I update I'll have more to report!
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Croatian SC books: 29 / 100 Croatian SC films: 41 / 100
Russian SC books: 31 / 100 Russian SC films: 27 / 100

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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Radioclare » Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:31 pm

12 Aug - Russian: 45 mins, Croatian: 12 mins
13 Aug - Russian: 59 mins, Croatian: 3 mins
14 Aug - Russian: 52 mins
15 Aug - Russian: 32 mins, Croatian: 49 mins
16 Aug - Russian: 120 mins, Croatian: 48 mins
17 Aug - Russian: 36 mins, Croatian: 53 mins

I felt like I was in a bit of a slump with my studying after my last post, so at the weekend I decided to block my social media again. I've done this a few times over the past year and I generally find it quite refreshing. At the moment I've got everything blocked except for half an hour a day, when I hopefully remember to log my time for the 6WC on Twitter. I know I won't keep up the block indefinitely - I'm going away for a weekend at the end of the month, after which I'll probably want to upload some photos - but at the moment I am definitely not missing it. Between people posting pictures of themselves breaking Covid lockdowns and people who post aggressively about their political views, I've just been finding social media a bit frustrating recently.

Anyway, as part of this I blocked YouTube too. I haven't done this previously when I've gone on a blocking spree, because I generally only use YouTube to watch things which are educational or to listen to music. But I figured that using YouTube to watch Russian videos which are too short to count for the Super Challenge isn't really a good use of time when I'm behind on the films part of the challenge, and if I blocked it I wouldn't be able to waste time doing this. It was a spur of the moment kind of decision which I hadn't really thought through, because I've also been using YouTube to watch the Russian series, Мухтар, which I've been counting towards the challenge. Oops :oops:

Before I blocked everything I'd watched another three episodes of Мухтар last week. I wouldn't say I'm not enjoying it - I actually do enjoy it when I watch it and I feel like I'm starting to make a bit of progress with understanding - but the problem is that when I finish one episode, I have no motivation to watch another one. The nature of the series is that each episode is 100% self-contained; the episode starts with a crime, which will be fully solved by the time the credits roll. This means that there's never a cliff-hanger or similar to inspire me to keep watching and at the moment, when listening to Russian is still very hard work, I'm really feeling the lack of that.

So, on Sunday evening, I decided it was time to try and find a Russian telenovela to get hooked on. I explored various ways of trying to watch Russian TV online. I found a few services which looked promising but then when I investigated them further, it turned out that you needed to buy some sort of box to attach to your TV which seemed way too complicated. Then I found a website called ivi.tv, which seems to be allowing me to watch TV for free. I haven't worked out what the catch is yet!

Anyway, I've started watching a series called 'Татьянин день' which seems very promising. It has 221 episodes, which is comparable to the length of a Croatian telenovela, and it feels like it's got the potential for an equally long and complicated storyline :lol: I've only watched two episodes so far, so there's not a lot more I can say, but it feels like something I have the potential to get addicted to and I think that's what my Russian listening needs at the moment :) I think I need to be invested in a storyline and to care whether I understand the dialogue or not to be able to improve my focus. Мухтар doesn't quite provide that motivation because if I don't understand one episode properly, it has no bearing on whether I'll understand the next episode.

I did learn a surprising new word from watching Мухтар last week though: "кинолог". One of the characters was talking about the behaviour of dogs and saying that he ought to know what such and such a thing meant because he was a "кинолог". This was a new word to me, but I figured it must have something to do with films or cinema (кино). Did the character have a degree in film studies? I was confused enough to look it up and it turns out that "кинолог" is Russian for "dog handler". Which makes perfect sense in the context of the series, because the character who was speaking was indeed the dog handler. But I would never have guessed it in a million years :lol:

What else? I'm still stuck in Chapter 10 of Colloquial Russian 2. I actually had a moment at the weekend when I was failing to get anywhere with an exercise on participles and I just decided the book was too hard for me and I ought to give up. Some of the grammar points are 100% going above my head now and I feel like I need to go back to something like my Schaum's grammar and just do drills of the more basic grammar points which I still don't feel I've fully mastered. But in the end I decided to persevere. I'm on chapter 10 of 14 after all, and a quick flick through the rest of the book revealed that some of the other grammar topics don't look as difficult. In fact, the rest of the chapter is about uses of по, which is definitely not my specialist subject but equally not an absolutely impossible one.

In Croatian, I'm trying to get back into watching 'Drugo ime ljubavi' while on my exercise bike. A character got shot this week so there was lots of dramatic music I could cycle fast to. I've also started reading a book called 'Narodno veselje' by Pavao Pavličić. He's an author whose crime fiction I really enjoy. This book isn't a detective novel though, but rather a series of reminiscences about life growing up in the 1950s/1960s. So there's no exciting plot, but it's still an enjoyable read. I am generally slower at reading this sort of non fiction compared to a proper story book, but I'm motivating myself with the fact that I'm not allowed to read another instalment of the Twilight series in Russian until I've finished a book in Croatian :D
6 x
Croatian SC books: 29 / 100 Croatian SC films: 41 / 100
Russian SC books: 31 / 100 Russian SC films: 27 / 100

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Re: Radioclare's 2020 log (Russian, Croatian)

Postby Teango » Tue Aug 18, 2020 11:16 pm

Radioclare wrote:I'm still stuck in Chapter 10 of Colloquial Russian 2. I actually had a moment at the weekend when I was failing to get anywhere with an exercise on participles and I just decided the book was too hard for me and I ought to give up.

You're doing great, Radioclare! Just 4 more chapters to go after this one and you're done with this millstone. Remember how you felt last October when you finally reached the summit of Colloquial Russian 1? Well get ready to taste the sweet air of success at the top again. You've already made significant progress in Russian since then, which was one of your goals this year, and you're about to score your next level-up.

My advice at this stage, given your growing frustration with an increasingly steeper ascent into the second half of Colloquial Russian 2, would be to take a little breather for a few days. When I encounter words like "give up" or "quit", my knee-jerk reaction is always to take a break and get in touch with why I fell in love with the language in the first place. You can still do Russian, but perhaps play around with something lighthearted and fun that you enjoy in place of studying grammar lessons and adding new vocabulary to an already brimming list. Maybe check out some Russian music lyrics, dance around the room, and challenge your local Domovoy to a karaoke dance-off? Find something that makes you smile and use what you already know, and this will help everything come together organically and nurture healthy hardy roots. And with a fresher head and renewed motivation to boot, you can then return to the task of scaling and conquering this textbook once and for all. :)
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