moving about. learning Chinese, practicing Tai Ji Quan, doing Qi Gong, or simply going out running. resisting the monkey impulses.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

March Progress

Chinese : classes over for another term. Waiting to hear what will happen next - the classes don't run unless there are a minimum number of students, and some of us (there were 6 left at the end) are dropping out for various reasons. Chinesepod is a great backup, and now that I've got a car adapter, I can crack through the podcasts. I don't listen to Newbie level now, and I keep running out of Elementaries. Intermediates are still slightly too hard.

Running : I seem to be able to manage three sessions a week now, plus one gym. Or two gyms and two runs. Some good runs lately, around familiar loops.

Taiji : At the weekly class, we got to the end of Lao Jia Yi Lu. Admittedly in a very ragged way, but yeah! Off to Wang's class today to do it properly, where we are about 12 moves in. Although the level is more consistent there (only reasonably serious folk turn up), his method is to go over and over the moves rather than go through forms at a high rate of knots.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Chatty chat chat

Yesterday, spent most of my lunch break (wu xui) chatting with a Chinese person on Skype. I had posted a notice for language partners on the Chinesepod forum, and consequently this person got in touch.

Although my level of understanding is really terrible, I think, we were still able to keep a (typed) conversation going to and fro. I needed some help here and there. Sometimes I would recall the word or phrase, having been reminded. Mostly in pinyin (which can be confusing without the tonemarks) with occasional hanzi. When I know the characters, hanzi is more efficient, but if I don't then I am likely to be stumped.

I picked some (probably obvious) chat abbreviations. e.g. "hao d" instead of "hao de" and l for le. These words occur _a lot_ in Mandarin. Doubtless there are many more for hardcore chat heads.

Next time, we will try audio.

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