Sunday, February 26, 2012

Weekly update (20-26 February)

Back home and back to my languages. This week I've spent much time on French, Turkish and Portuguese. I also did some Italian. Apart from that, every day I watch some TV news in English (my favorite news channel is Al Jazeera) and Spanish (TVE Internacional and 24 Horas).

I worked on Unidad 15 of „Aprende y mejora rápidamente tu portugués” (written in Spanish). It's the last unit of this textbook. It contains a reading and vocabulary connected with health, illnesses and medicines. In terms of grammar I studied indirect speech, modals verbs, compound personal infinitive, compound sentences, conditions and hipothetic events as well as past conditional. In fact it's all very complicated. While expressing hipothetic events you sometimes use indicative, sometimes infinitive and sometimes subjunctive. It'll take me some time to get used to it and to drill very well when to use what.

I found the time to watch some TV news in Portuguese – my favorite program is Telejornal broadcast on RTP Internacional. In yesterday's evening news they discussed, among other things:
-Seca em Portugal
-Baixas aumentam (because of the crisis)
-Crise real em Espanha (judicial case of the king's son-in-law)
-Berlusconi e a justiça
-Mandela hospitalizado
-Combates na Síria.
I learned two new words connected with sports:
-andebol – handball
-râquebi – rugby

While at the gym I do some treadmill regularly and it's a very good opportunity to drill some French. At the moment I'm in course of the Pimsleur French II. I did units 22 through 26. Not much new words and I still have some trouble with the expressions like „j'en ai” and „je n'en ai pas”.
It literally means „I have it/them” and „I don't have it/them” in relation to the thing/things already mentioned. It's a bit strange because I don't seem to have problems with a similar construcions: „j'y vais” – „I'm going there” in relation to the place already mentioned and known to the listener.

On my way to work and back as well as at home I studied some Turkish from a very good course made by the Foreign Language Institute for U.S. diplomats. The units I've studied contain, among other things, very important structures necessary to express indirect speech and to bulit compound sentences such as „when I was...”, „they told me to...” They are built differently then in Polish or English, so I'm sure I'll need quite a time to engrave them into my memory.
Today I started something I wanted to start some time ago – namely scriptorium. It's dedicated to writing, all form of it, sometimes it's just copying the texts or exercises from textbooks or newspapers, sometimes it's doing written exercises, sometimes writing short essays.

I also dedicated a little bit of time to watch some TV news in Italian. I like especially RAI News. Apart from the news I watched also some interviews, e.g. „Che tempo che fa”. Today they broadcasted an interview with Pier Luigi Bersani, secretary of the Democratic Party of Italy, the main center-left political party in the country, former minister of transports and minister of economic development.
You can read about his interview here (in Italian).

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