Tristano's log 2017: Wanderland in the Netherlusts

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Tristano
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Location: The Netherlands
Languages: Italian (N), English (C1), Dutch (B2), French (B2--), Spanish (B1?), Hebrew (A0++ illiterate), Russian (on hold)
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby Tristano » Wed Apr 12, 2017 7:01 am

Expugnator wrote:It's sad that you're letting go of Hebrew, tristano, but I understand that your motivation is gone.

If I were you I wouldn't take any other Romance language seriously. I'd either pick Russian, which you have reasons for learning, or pick another language of your choice.


Hey @Expugnator, I'm not letting it go yet. I don't want to become c1 either (never been my goal) but more in general I need to reassess my purpose of learning this language. I like it and I didn't get bored studying it, even when the method I'm using almost exclusively is very boring. I also have to push myself not changing language compulsively and not shy away from difficulties (otherwise I end up learning only the romance ones plus English and Dutch which I'm basically forced to). I have a goal to conquer all the major languages and cultures and still I'm convinced that Hebrew is the perfect entry point for the middle Orient, even if I started to learn it almost by mistake.

And the user who answered after you gave me a good hope (thanks!!!). If there is a community of people eager to speak Hebrew then I should definitely try to join it.

Russian can still wait :) :(
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reineke
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby reineke » Wed Apr 12, 2017 1:52 pm

Tristano wrote:I got the news that my Israeli colleague will soon no longer work with my unit and with that two things vanish:
- casual practice
- the motivation I started Hebrew

Now I have three options:
- I continue with Hebrew, even if I will probably never ever speak it again in my life - there are only two teachers on Italki and they are very expensive. Pros: good as first semitic language. Cons: much less possibilities than Arabic.

- I start Portuguese because: very easy +1 and will both reinforce and ruin my Spanish. Pros: easy, I can already read native books without ever having it studied. Cons: yet another romance language.

- I restart Russian like it was my original plan before I took the Hebrew way. Pros: I fulfill my current biggest language love. Cons: too wise, I must do something stupid and waste precious time. It's written in my contract.

- I start another language and then change my mind and go back to the previous three options. Pros: funny. Cons: stupid.


I didn't quite agree with your reasoning when you started Hebrew (and I didn't know that a coworker was your source of motivation). After I've read your newest post I don't agree with your reasons for dropping Hebrew. You have a fatalistic approach to Hebrew. The loss of a Hebrew speaking colleague should be a nonevent. I quickly found lots of online tutors and saw prices ranging from $5 to $50. My guess is that the cheaper tutors were located in Israel. While looking for other things I also saw a lot of online Hebrew resources.

I am not sure I understand your reasoning regarding Russian. You seem to enjoy opaque languages and Russian is your greatest "love". I hope you love it a lot more than Hebrew. My best guess is that you are bored. If that's the case your third option makes sense.

Finally, you don't have to take Romance languages seriously if you're OK to respond to a simple question such as do you speak Spanish in a circuitous manner: "well, you see, I speak Italian and I understand Spanish but...."
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Tristano
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Languages: Italian (N), English (C1), Dutch (B2), French (B2--), Spanish (B1?), Hebrew (A0++ illiterate), Russian (on hold)
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby Tristano » Wed Apr 12, 2017 3:44 pm

Hi @Reineke!
I like when someone disagrees with me and offers me solid motivations. And in full Dutch spirit, you don't shy away from speaking your mind frankly, and that I appreciate of you!

A "little point on the i": I looked for tutors in Italki only but I didn't think about looking for them on different channels. As far as I know life in Israel is extremely expensive and salaries much higher than the American and European counterparts. My guess is that the expensive ones are located in Israel and the cheap ones are second language speakers.

A second little point on the i (puntino sulla i, it means taking the smallest detail and be picky about it, thing the Italians are good in, sorry :) :) :) ) is that I actually speak Spanish fluently and I can actually write it, even if accuracy can vary from good to maccaroni, but in principle I can fly to Spain tomorrow, have a job the day after tomorrow and use Spanish on a daily basis, for work and any possible activity with little problems (of course taking advantage of exposure to bring my skills to a whole new level).

Said that, I love the Romance languages, they offer me huge reward and little challenge. My biggest challenge is indeed the little challenge as I can go the fun fun way and avoid sweat and tears that were always present during my Dutch challenge.

Non transparent languages mean even more sweat and tears, so:
- romance languages are S&T level 0, with exception of Romanian
- germanic languages S&T level 1, with exception of Icelandic
- Russian is for me S&T level 2
- Hebrew and Arabic S&T are for me level 3 because of their vowelless alphabets

My problem is that I want the fun and I want to avoid the S&T. With Dutch I could force myself because the benefits were too high and too urgent and too practical to ignore them. With the other languages I take the ratio benefits/S&T very seriously (with "fun" and "intellectual pleasure being part of the benefits).

You say:
My best guess is that you are bored.

You're right! But despite that, choosing another language will not benefit me, because I don't have a big desire about it or I'm too afraid of that perceived difficulty.
Portuguese will benefit me greatly because it's a big language and it is easy, but I rather avoid to go for this way now because I prefer to put it between two difficult languages to get some sort of "active rest".

Now for Russian is easy, it's the language that I desire the most to learn in this moment, and in my schedule since two years already, and my interest always come back. Plus, I already started do something with it and I fell even more in love. If I have to follow my heart, I should stop everything and restart Russian.


Hebrew is a fortunate mistake. A mistake because the reasons I started to study it are weak. Fortunate because I discovered that I like the language and I can benefit from learning it (if it were a language isolate I would definitely stop with it). Now, even if my reasons to continue with it are as weak as the ones to start it, I have huge resistance to stop with it, for a series of equally weak motivations:
- I already spent (little) study time for it
- I already spent (little) money for it
- I want to stop wanderlusting as my experience with Dutch taught me that the fun will eventually arrive once I sweat enough bloody tears
- I prefer to start new languages in January, with a new log and a "I will not start new languages compulsively" new year's resolution
- I want to temper my spirit by persevering even when the light at the end of the tunnel is super far away and the experience is autopunishing
- I will be a better learner for $nextLanguage once I'm satisfied with my current focused Hebrew studies

So for now is Hebrew till burn out.
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reineke
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby reineke » Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:34 pm

Thanks, Tristano. Speaking of dotting all the i's and crossing all the t's, your profile lists Spanish as A2. BTW, I thought Dutch was your love. If I can spot one national characteristic here it's that you declare love too easily.
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Tristano
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby Tristano » Thu Apr 13, 2017 10:06 am

reineke wrote:Thanks, Tristano. Speaking of dotting all the i's and crossing all the t's, your profile lists Spanish as A2. BTW, I thought Dutch was your love. If I can spot one national characteristic here it's that you declare love too easily.


True! I'm a sort of teenager with that :D
Dutch was never my love before I became closed to B2. I actually learned French and Spanish in the meanwhile because I was finding too annoying to study only Dutch.
When I list my CEFR level I tend to put the level of my weakest skill. With Spanish my weakest skill is writing (because of the grammar I never studied), that's why I list it as A2, but I can go out with a group of Spanish friends to drink and talk the whole time in Spanish losing not too many details (not more than I would do in English or French or Dutch).
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby zenmonkey » Thu Apr 13, 2017 1:59 pm

BTW one of my Hebrew tutors on italki is Russian. He is cheaper than a professional teacher (and not quite the same quality) but might be of interest for you if you want both languages from one source.
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Tristano
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby Tristano » Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:51 pm

Dutch: for my further development in this language I've been advised from my boss to take a university study at the open university following a course of my interest in Dutch language. I like the idea and I'm going to fetch information about it.

Hebrew: restarted assimil, I'm at lesson 10. With Pimsleur I'm at the 51 (after the break I restarted from the 45).
I'm delaying the reading and writing skills so that I can concentrate on listening and speaking. I want to see when I will hit the wall. I will then use my Routledge course and Duolingo. I plan to use Book2 and Hebrewpod101 as a bridge after Pimsleur. Maybe I will also try Routledge colloquial Hebrew to fill in some colloquial usage of the language. At that point I will try to use native resources and see how far I get. Probably I will have a big gap in the vocabulary, so I can try to fill in some anki.
Resisted my wanderlust I finally feel enthusiast about this unexpected but high potential journey.
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Tristano
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Languages: Italian (N), English (C1), Dutch (B2), French (B2--), Spanish (B1?), Hebrew (A0++ illiterate), Russian (on hold)
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby Tristano » Tue Apr 18, 2017 7:42 pm

Quick reply to myself.
- open universiteit: 12000 euro's per course (standard costs for university in Netherlands). Hahahahahhaa no.
- hebrews: assimil 15 (l'hebreu).
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Tristano
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby Tristano » Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:04 pm

Quick report. Hebrew: Pimsleur lesson 52 (or 53, I'm not sure), Assimil lesson 17. Assimil definitely throws more meat on the barbecue much faster than Pimsleur (and this is no news), ad I'm glad that I didn't start immediately with Assimil otherwise it was going to be too difficult (differently from latin languages where I would do 10 lessons per time how slow it looks like to me).

Hebrew has a rhythm, an accent that can't be mistaken with Arabic. I think I can immediately recognize spoken Hebrew even though I won't understand much of what is being said. I have the impression that when the classic language doesn't arrive, they added some random latin based vocabulary (like "dieta" or "benzin", really there wasn't an hebrew way to say the same thing? I can't really complain about it though.
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Tristano
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Posts: 320
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 7:11 am
Location: The Netherlands
Languages: Italian (N), English (C1), Dutch (B2), French (B2--), Spanish (B1?), Hebrew (A0++ illiterate), Russian (on hold)
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Re: Tristano's log 2017: Hebrew

Postby Tristano » Tue May 02, 2017 1:43 pm

Short update:
Hebrew: Pimsleur 58/90, Assimil 18/85.

Learning this language is so far painful. But learning Dutch has been more painful. Probably the reason is that I don't have nothing to lose if I don't learn Hebrew and nothing to gain if I succeed (not by practical means).

I will try to honour my resolution to stick with this language and not start another one for the whole year.
I said many things in this log (confirming that I have a bypolar mind when it comes to languages):

At the end of Pimsleur 3 I'm going to have a check out point: I'll try one Italki lesson and see how it goes. Probably it will be enough for my purposes, for now. I don't have big plans for this language. If I reach a a2 spoken only I can consider myself satisfied.


My current plan is to become lower intermediate with this language and then let it grow with casual exposure, so that I can dedicate myself to Russian.


I took the painful decision. I'm going to invest on Hebrew. I like the language.


I'm defining my strategy. My strategy is unsurprisingly to use my hidden moments (because I have practically zero time in the non hidden moments). Following a completionist multitrack approach I am going to complete
- Pimsleur (in the car)
- HebrewPod101 (in the car, after I'm done with Pimsleur)
- Assimil (in the lunch break)
- Duolingo (in the lunch break, probably after I'm done with Assimil).
- Routledge introductory course to Modern Hebrew (evening in the bed and weekend)

It should be possible to do all this in one year I think. Once I'm done with this things I guess I can start using simple native resources and start Russian.


Hebrew is a fortunate mistake. A mistake because the reasons I started to study it are weak. Fortunate because I discovered that I like the language and I can benefit from learning it (if it were a language isolate I would definitely stop with it).


Resisted my wanderlust I finally feel enthusiast about this unexpected but high potential journey.


So I guess I should name this log "The bipolar language student".
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