Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Surreptitious Post During School Hours

Hi, everyone. I'm in school right now, so this is a short post. I'm still going to get the rest of those romance phrases, but I thought I'd go over reading Türkçe, mostly to teach myself, because although they use Latin script, it's bloody tricky to remember what all the accents and things mean, sound-wise. So, the ones I've figured out so far are ı, which is i without the dot (so I guess they dot their capital I's?). ı makes a schwa sound (ə). I am an ex-spelling bee nerd, which is why I know that. But that's old news, and we're onto a new language. In any case, a schwa makes this very neutral vowel sound, sort of like /uh/. There's also ş, which makes a /sh/ sound, as in beş (five). I have to figure out how to type that one... and finally, ç, which I found out the hard and embarrassing way does not sound in Türkçe as it does in French. It makes this superseksi /ch/ sound, and I'm going to start using the word çok (very) way too much, because it's so cool sounding. This picture is of the Yeni Mosque, one of the most famous sites in Istanbul. It's meant to be fabulously beautiful and I really, really want to see it. I don't know if my host family will be in Istanbul or Ankara, but I'm hoping I'll at least get to visit.

Quick bit of Turkish history: they didn't always use the Latin alphabet. I think it was in 1922, after the Ottoman empire stopped existing, Atatürk decided that he was going to purify the Turkish language, which was until then using Arabic script and heavily influenced by arabic in terms of vocab. Or something. Anyway, he basically made up a latin-esque script and made it illegal to use anything else. I don't know how cool the Turkish people were with this, but I'm rather grateful that I don't have to learn a new alphabet.

Okay, so not such a short post after all. I was able to finish a test early. Whatever. Hey, news: Tomorrow after school, all the international students who stay in the dorms, mostly from China and Korea, are having a yard sale for all their amazing clothes so their luggage isn't way overweight when they go home for the summer! So, most of those girls are much smaller than me - I'm about five feet, eight - but I'm hoping to pick up something nice. Then, on Saturday, it's my little sister's bat mitzvah! Should be super fun! Have a nice weekend, everyone, as I probably won't have time between parties to post!

İyi günler (So I suppose they do dot those I's!)

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