Challenge:

Learn German.

Medium: language (written, oral)

Duration: April 2014 - ?

 

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I can't yet imagine how difficult it would be to move to a country whose native language is not based on the Roman alphabet. To start from scratch and learn an entirely new set of syntax, symbols, sounds and characters at the age of thirty would be a significant challenge.

Luckily, German is not as distant from English as, say, Sanscrit or Chinese. However, from what I have learned about the German language, I don't ever expect to master it. Like most languages, it has various dialects, levels of formality and usage, as well as slang, much of which must of course be absorbed rather than learned. I don't (yet) aspire to speak Business-Level German, but I'd like to at least understand the basics and order things without sounding like a goddamn caveman. ("Espresso haben?")

Between finding and furnishing a flat, landing a creative leadership position, navigating the transit system, exploring the city and networking, I will have to make a serious effort to dedicate time to language studies. Though part of the challenge of moving to Berlin, learning German is, in itself, an adventure. I have no idea how long it will take, but I'm gonna guess that it'll be something of an extended effort.

Luckily, most residents here are bilingual!

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