This blog post is solely dedicated to my husband and will include the whole page of complaints. Please be warned.
Now to start, let’s stress it, Polish is not the easiest language in the world and it can definitely be discouraging when you try to understand all the changes to verbs and nouns. That being said, neither is Cantonese with all characters, spoken language and written language being so different and all those slang words that make it almost impossible for me to follow! But I’m Polish and P. is from Hong Kong, so shouldn’t it be a given that we both try to learn each other’s mother tongues?
Stage 1: Enthusiasm.
When I just met P., he was happily learning sentences and greetings in Polish, having met a lot of Polish people (girls) and having experienced their hospitality. So when we met, he actually used a few phrases to impress and it worked somehow. So when we started dating, he would still ask sometimes, how to say this and how to say that. He would look at me proudly when he knew names of things arounds us and I was very happy with this enthusiasm. But it didn’t last long before we moved onto the…
Stage 2: Busy at work.
When we came to Hong Kong, we were both looking for jobs and so the busy season started. First it was job hunting. Then job interviews. Then new job. Then training. Then being fresh at work and having to OT. Somehow finding those excuses became a habit and while I was still trying to learn Cantonese, P. came to conclusion that there is no need to learn Polish at this moment, as we are living in Hong Kong now.
Stage 3: Lazy effort.
After nagging on him for a long time, P. agreed to sign up for Polish language course on HKU Space. It was supposed to be a couple of months and few meetings with Polish native speakers. I was so excited! And then it got cancelled… That’s how P. effort to learn Polish pretty much ended. Currently, I am forcing him to spend those 5 minutes on learning Polish from application on his phone. And that leads me to the question of a…
Stage 4: Future.
How will it look like from now on. Will P. continue to study or give up? He would always say that he would learn sooner or later. Studying Polish is always tomorrow’s plan.
And now, you have to know, the whole process of P.’s learning Polish is exactly how my process of learning Cantonese is. I started out super eager to learn, passed some basic courses and had another intermediate course cancelled, then my enthusiasm burnt down and now I’m not progressing at all! Being in Hong Kong makes me think that I will somehow learn it through “assimilation” by hearing people use it around me, but instead I learnt to just not register it at all when people talk in Cantonese!