Saturday, January 8, 2011

Project 2011, January 7 - My mother is not a horse

Dinner - creamy rice soup with ham, fruit, spiced pumpkin biscuits (a nice use for leftover pumpkin, but take heed, you really need to use a light hand with the dough).

C's Dinner - Beef stew, pears

Enrichment - For awhile I've been interested in learning calligraphy, and in researching that, I became interested in Chinese characters.  Today I studied some beginners' Chinese language (oral for now, hopefully written some time in the future - the distant future) using the BBC's language tutorials.  Check it out here.  I studied Spanish for two years in high school and it wasn't easy.  Now that I'm more than 15 years older, learning a language without the trusty ABCs would be much more difficult.  Alas, the BBC provides many aides, such as a guide to tones, games, a pinyin guide, and slide shows.  There are also videos, but full-length videos are only available in the UK.  I chose the "Real Chinese" section of the site, and spent quite awhile on Topics 1-5.  It's amazing how much difference in meaning a word has just because of the tone of the speaker's voice.  One word, that sounds like "ma" means mother, linen, horse, and "to swear" depending on tone and inflection.  Be careful not to call your mother a horse.    I'll be back on topics 1-5 the next time I visit the site, too.

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