How could I best describe my relationship to the German language? Long, difficult, frustrating, but occasionally rewarding, although when these moments occur, they are quickly followed by a series of others meant to bring my spirits down again. Maybe this is the way it should be, after all, it is one of those languages renowned for its traps.
During the first years of my study of German, I had only remotely heard of the existence of several dialects across Germany; actually, besides some cartoons I watched on RTL around the year 2000, I don’t remember hearing the language spoken by natives. So, I had a major language shock when I arrived here and I was baffled by the fact that whereas I could understand what some people were telling me, in other cases I couldn’t get more than the frequent simple words. The reason I discovered soon enough. Continue reading