Today was, oddly enough, an exercise in complete effortlessness, now don’t get this confused with a ‘lack’ of effort, quite contrary in fact. I was ready and willing when I got up to commit wholeheartedly to sitting down and powering through the late stages of Hiragana and I planned to learn the remaining fifty eight characters over two days; I thought that this task would relegate me to a work desk for the foreseeable future, however, this wasn’t the case.
It turned out to be ridiculously simple, there were only five rules I needed to follow with three notable exceptions that I had to be careful of, and when I’d remembered what the ‘starting letter’ of that character would turn into with the addition of a diacritic mark the rest followed with contemptuous ease. I managed to remember and be able to read twenty five different character with less than an hour’s work. I’m very impressed with myself.
Languages have, admittedly, never been my strong suit, I understand that there are trends running through them and that they can be grasped with enough effort and perseverance, but I’ve never studied one for long enough fully grasp it. Thus, my knowledge of languages outside of English is piecemeal at best; an errant phrase here, a broken sentence there- nothing remotely special. But this is the first time that anything within any language has clicked for me and I found myself picking up new sounds and characters very swiftly.
This isn’t to suggest that I believe that I will pick up katakana or kanji with this level of ease, In fact I know I won’t, but it’s refreshing to have something in a field, otherwise foreign to me, to come so easily. This is far from the end of the road though, I still can’t even say the simplest of sentences and can perhaps recognize less than ten words.
That will of course come after I’ve learned katakana though, despite the fact that this writing system is only really used for foreign words that standard Japanese writing systems have no word for, like “Television” for instance (which I believe is terebi).
And now, ladies and gentlemen, for the largest gallery I have ever put into a blog post.
And there we have it, twenty five Hiragana for your viewing pleasure.
Hopefully tomorrow will be equally as fruitful.