April 22, 2012 | Dutch

Language Update Alert!

I have been silent...but I am definitely studying.

Dearest Readers,

I know I am some weeks behind on this blog. I have received questions about that matter, inquiring about my health and well-being and continuing commitment. My health and well-being and continuing commitment are all intact. I truly appreciate the interest and concern.

I have actually been studying more than usual, to the point that I have had trouble finding time to document what I am up to. I am now feverishly trying to update where I have fallen behind. I will add backdated entries shortly, because I have more to say on my Dutch experiences, and also on four languages that I am at present in the midst of reviewing: Spanish, French, German, and Italian.

In addition, I have been devoting time to compiling the long-promised Reviews section, where I will list and comment on the resources I used for the various languages I have studied. In recent months, I have been getting more and more questions from readers asking for guidance on products and books, and I would like this website to be genuinely useful to others, and not merely memorialize my own joyous experiences through the language wilds of New York.

More to come soon.



Comments (3)

Gary • Posted on Tue, April 24, 2012 - 6:01 pm EST

Ellen - Congrats on plugging along with your mission for so long. Do you anticipate you’ll be able to maintain these languages later on in life, or do you even have a desire to do so?

By the way, is most of your LL material owned or do you borrow the same from the library? Seems it could get expensive to own it all, yet some feel it’s necessary so they can mark up the same, all part of the language learning process…..

Patricia • Posted on Thu, April 26, 2012 - 9:51 am EST

Glad to learn you’re doing well. I just discovered your blog a week ago and found it very inspiring.  I look forward to continue to read about your joyous experiences with languages. All the best to you!

Ellen Jovin • Posted on Fri, April 27, 2012 - 1:40 am EST

Thank you for the encouragement!

Gary, in answer to your question about the language-learning materials: at the very start of the project, I got things from the library. I was trying to see how much was available for free to New Yorkers who might be interested in learning a new language. But as I was making my way through that first Russian grammar from the New York Public Library, I pretty quickly remembered: I HAVE to mark up books. I can’t read without a pencil in hand! So that was it for the library-checkout idea.

I now buy most of the books I use. I do get some books as review copies from the publishers, but not many. I would try to get more review copies, but it is sometimes a slow process and requires advance planning. I have had review copies arrive weeks after I finished the relevant language., by contrast, delivers overnight. :)

Anyway, I now have shelves covered with marked-up language books.

As for language retention in the future: I will answer that in more detail shortly in a blog entry. But the brief answer is: I would so love to retain more than my brain is capable of retaining! It is a constant battle against language entropy up there!

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