Ele/ela in sound
In the listening comprehension exercises (you hear a sentence and have to write it down) I make a lot of mistakes writing ela for ele and vice versa. It seems to me that the final vowel often gets mashed with the starting vowel of the next word, but also the Slow audio often gives a wrong impression.
Am I the only one with this issue?
I hear "ele" ending with a long "e" sound, like "elee", and "ela" ending with a short "uh" sound, like "eluh". When I play the slow audio back, I listen for these distinctions because I also lose the final vowel sound in many of the natural speed audio. This is especially true if "a" or "um" follow, and I lose that article entirely.
The first E in ele is closed, similar to the E in "verb". The first E in ela is open, similar to the E in "net". Once you get used to it, it's not at all hard to differentiate between then even if you don't hear the last vowel.