Surprise Russian Conversation in Puerto Rico
I went to Puerto Rico two weeks ago for a vacation and to practice my Spanish. The Spanish experience went well (though on a side note, go to a place where more people don't speak English if your intention is to practice.) The big surprise of the trip was being stuck in a hour long line (the car rental place was sloooow) with a Ukrainian! Coolest hour in line ever. I had the opportunity to practice my Level 9 Russian. I made LOTS of mistakes, but he understood me and I him (at least the important bits)! He spoke very little English, so I had to depend on him helping walk me through some sentences, but it worked! I still have a very long way to go, but I can do some very basic communication. Nothing is more encouraging than that. Just thought I'd share if any of you guys are feeling discouraged with Russian, since it's friggin' hard for us Angleesky speakers. :)
Wow! I bet that was interesting!
You did incredibly well to hold a Russian conversation be understood, especially considering the randomness of the situation (it's easier when you can prepare for such conversations than be put on the spot). Jumping between two foreign languages is NOT easy, especially when they aren't closely related.
Отличная работа! =D
Btw Puerto Rico is beautiful. Been there twice before.
Of course. I started with basic questions like are you speaking Russian (to double check), do you speak Spanish or English, what city are you from, how old is your baby, how many other kids do you have and why they were in PR. I told him I used to work with a Ukrainian (BTW, she wasn't in my office so I didn't ever get to practice with her.). I did not ask if he knew her, haha! :) He asked me where I was from, how long I have been studying Russian and why. I told him (my biggest mistake) that I "liked" Soviet history. Then after seeing his reaction, quickly corrected and said I found Soviet history "interesting." I think that's the majority of our conversation.
Half of Ukrainians hate Soviet history, half love it. why do you like Soviet history? I personally love many things from those times, especially 60-80s. and there are many reasons for that love which are unknown for western people
Do you use any sources for learning Russian language besides Duolingo?
I enjoy learning about all of Russian history, but I find Soviet history particularly interesting. I think it's a mix of the ideas, the propaganda art, the mass industrialization and being perplexed at how people were treated. It's just all fascinating and disturbing at the same time.
I use a number of additional materials. I listen to a lot of Podcasts. I listen to some native podcasts to try and get used to hearing the language. I also have listened to some language learning podcasts, but there aren't many good ones. I love the Coffee Break series for other languages, but they don't do Russian yet. I recommend "Russian Made Easy." It's only 30 episodes and the guy doing it has a really dorky method, but it really helped me understand the case system and noun/adjective agreement better. (I tried his free trial of his pay course, but didn't think it was work the $300. I may revisit that idea later.) Outside of that, for as long as I have been learning Russian, I haven't had much luck. There isn't the high number of quality resources out there that are present for more popular languages like Spanish and French. I've made more progress with Duo and that RME podcast than anything else.