William Matheson (nova_one) wrote,
William Matheson
nova_one

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things

Przemek (my host parent's son-in-law who lives here with his wife Paulina, their daughter) just showed me his photo lab - they have a new one in another town. Paulina's brother is also a photographer, also with a studio and equipment. I saw the pictures he took of Paulina and Przemek in the old studio for their wedding, and I was astounded. "Dziękuje, to mi się podoba. Piękny!" As I say to Paulina's brother (who speaks a bit of English), "I'm not a photographer, I just take too many pictures." Czarek voices his assent in Polish insultingly quickly. =)

I find the language barrier to be quite intimidating - hopefully the English classes we (the group) will be hosting will help get me into the swing of things. I carry a phrasebook everywhere I go, but I don't have the confidence to try anything but the simplest phrases yet. At this point I still know more Ukrainian than Polish. I liked learning Ukrainian... in some ways it was easier, because once you learned the cyrillic pronounciations (and gained the ability to decipher eclectic cyrillic handwriting) you could read unfamiliar words aloud with ease. Polish is different. If you mispronounce a character, you can be easily misunderstood. I suppose that's the same with any language, but Polish has a way of teasing you into incorrect pronounciations more regularly than Ukrainian, in my opinion because the language has all the regular latin characters except for "v."

I feel bad that I'm not fluent in Polish (in the same sense that I am not familiar with the Engine Assembly procedure for the Airbus A380) already; I know my host family understands where I'm coming from, but it's still not fair to them, because all the Canadian host families were blessed with each participant in each pair being able to speak the local language (Albertan). Well, with the possible exception of Vita... "This is place where no everybody people live." Ah, I miss her! She was really fun sometimes, and it's sad that we (even the Ukrainians) made fun of her English, but now that everyone is making fun of our Polish, we have a balance of karma (I hope).

Mentally I'm not sure where I'm at right now. I am still not settled into any sort of routine. Speaking of which, if I want my routine to involve regular invitations to the computer in Paulina and Przemek's room, I'd better get on with things! =) Take care, everyone.

Just out of financial considerations, it will probably come to pass that everyone will get only a single postcard apiece. I'd like to be able to send everyone a postcard from every location we visit, but this is not feasible. Instead, I will try to update my LiveJournal (with meaningful posts) more often. And of course there will be a photos update to my website when I get back. Speaking of which, my going away speech is on there if anyone wants to check that out.
Tags: poland, poland 2005
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