Thursday, January 12, 2012

1/12/12: A Picky Ear And A New...Like??

I should have guessed that with all of the French people coming in and out of my apartment, along with the fact that one of my roommates is French, I would eventually be exposed to elements of this culture that would, so to speak, grab me in. Lucky for me I have a friend who, not knowingly, exposed me to the one thing that could entice me to fall in love with any language, culture, or religion if it sits well with me; music. I'm sure I have heard French music before, but was never exposed to anything that resonated with me, until recently when I was introduced to the singer Corneille. I don't know if it was the specific song, or his voice, but I instantly fell in "like" with the beauty of the music and the gorgeous sound of the language. I say like because, unlike Arabic, this isn't a love at first listen language for me; however, in time I think it could grow into a language that I love. Knowing what you know about me it should be pretty easy to guess that I love languages, but have really never connected to or had any interest in any of the major European languages; I'm really all about the semitic language family (obviously)! However, since being exposed to French, and since learning that to be competitive in a field of work related to the Middle East I will need to learn a major European language that is prevalent in this region (French being the obvious choice due to their massive colonization of  North Africa, Lebanon, etc.), I have started giving the language a great deal of attention.

Like with Arabic, my interest in French is beginning with the music, and I'm sure it will only grow the more I expose myself to the language (though it will never replace or really even come close to the relationship I have with Arabic! Nothing can come close to that :-p) Here are the few songs that have helped in my self discovery of this gorgeous language (and the ones that I have been listening to on repeat for about a week now!)

I have learned something very interesting about myself from this whole "let's try and love a new language thing". A) I really can't love another language quite as much as Arabic, although I have a feeling that French will be a close 3rd to Arabic and Hebrew, and might even tie with Hebrew as I begin to actively learn it, and B) I have a really, really, really good ear for Arabic, and not so much of one for French. Even before my active study of Arabic I could learn the entire words to a song in about 2 days or so, and most of the words to a whole album in about 2 weeks (maybe less) . With French, I have been listening to the same three songs on repeat for over a week and I barley know the chorus to one of them... A bit frustrating that my "linguistic ear" is so picky, but at least I know that once I get it down I will be in command of the accent (that part of my "ear" luckily traverses many languages thank goodness)!

In other exciting news our landlords stopped by today to fix some things in the apartment, and their visit included the installation of blinds in our rooms! Finally I can change clothes without worrying whether or not the workers in the office building across from me can see everything! That and the sun won't wake me up in the early hours of the morning :-). 

The combination of the blinds, the fact that I am now done extensively outlining over half of my research paper, and the fact that it is now weekend, make this a fantastic day thus far!

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend and stay tuned for weekend updates soon <3,
Ba7abkum iktir!!!
Jordana Simone 

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