Thursday, August 08, 2013

Mah Nishmah?

Tr:  What's up?

I'm getting in touch with what it must feel like to be pre-literate. I can neither read nor write Hebrew, so it's hard to function in this place sometimes. Today on my walk there was a Hebrew sign in my path.  I wondered if it was telling me something like "GO BACK! THIS PATH IS CLOSED TODAY!"  I just ventured forth, hoping for the best.

Luckily, there are many signs in English, but I actually thought there would be more.  I'm trying to practice a few letters each day so that I can decipher a few words.  I'd like to know if the shop down the street sells falafels or lampshades.  I showed Koby some of my writing efforts and he said, "Well, you write like a first grader."

I always have scoffed when people say that different fonts are difficult for kids to decode, but now I get it.  Sometimes I try to decipher a sign using my alphabet sheet and I can't find any of the letters on the sheet because of the wonky style in which they're written.

Each night Husbandman and I get out the Hebrew book, but usually we just skip pages laughing in disbelief as we read over the headings, "That's too hard.  There's no way," or "We'll never get to the point where we'll actually know how to use this." Then we work on a NYT crossword puzzle and drink some wine.


Anonymous said...

I can't even imagine trying to learn something like Hebrew! Your attempts and stories of such are making me smile and chuckle. Off to 2nd grade, my friend, where I will remember your words when working with my young readers and writers.

Anonymous said...

I'm with N. I can't imagine learning Hebrew. I remember being in Greece many many years ago and being so confused. I think writing like a first grader is high praise!

bluebirdwoman said...

Good old Koby!! This is going to be a major adventure. The un-readable alphabet will probably teach you a lot about literacy. There may be book in this--not for teachers, for mass market. My Year in Haifa (ok, it doesn't quite have the ring of A Year in Provence, but who knows?). Miss you.

Ms. W. said...

When I was in China (I was in 6th grade), I used a 1st grade reader and writer for several months. I was really proud when I could read it. So, I'm going to say: Holla Atcha!

mm said...

First grade handwriting is adorable.

cb said...

I like your evening language class ritual. Just think how much you'll have learned in a few months.

Your blog links are so interesting. Have you been to Carmel or French Carmel?


Anonymous said...

This is the one bit of Hebrew I picked up from living with Iris. It was always the first thing she said when speaking with her family on the telephone. Every other time I asked if a particular repeated phrase meant this or that, the answer was always "No."

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LH said...

Yesterday a woman started speaking to me in rapid fire Hebrew while we were at the Technion swimming pool. I just pretended I didn't know she was talking to me and kept swimming around. I think she was making friendly chit chat, so I don't think it was anything too important.

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