Happy belated Valentine’s Day!
I was quite depressed the day before because I felt like giving up the challenge of learning to read in Chinese.
Yesterday, I had to handle both kids on my own as Hubby was away so I decided to take the boy to the bookstore. He was really excited since he loves reading too.
We went upstairs because they told us the kids’ books are there. But when I saw books ranging from “500 字” to “1,000 字”, I knew that we were in the wrong section!
I was quite proud of myself though because I could read: 小学生 (primary school children) Not bad eh? My son was also impressed because I read the characters out loud and he said, “Mummy, you can read Chinese? Where are my books? Hurry, hurry, let’s find my books!”
I kinda guess that little kids are called 儿童 (ér tóng) but I wasn’t sure so I just asked for the 幼儿园 (yòu ér yuán) “kindergarten” section. We were asked to go downstairs again -_-
Anyway, the kiddo pounced on some adventure books another boy was looking at. He asked the boy where he got the book from (in his terribly foreign-sounding accent that announces to everyone: “WE ARE FOREIGNERS”).
His cutesy accent charmed a salesman who dotingly showed him book after book until he found the one he wanted. Since they could chat with each other, I told him I’d be at the back looking at some books – he must yell for me when he wants to find me. He’s VERY LOUD so it’s ok.
Anyway, no Chinese kid calls their mother, “MUMMY!” It’s always 妈妈 mā ma.
I browsed through the flashcard section but didn’t find what I wanted. Soon, I heard a loud “MUMMY! WHERE ARE YOU?” and the fella shows me the 2 books he wants me to buy with the nice salesman following him. Tired of going through box after box of useless stuff, I decided to ask for help.
The salesman was going to help me when a salesgirl stepped in and said she’ll take care of me. She seemed quite aggressive but she was incredibly helpful as she knew exactly what I wanted! She was really nice to remove the cling-wrap so I could check the flashcards. Then, she also suggested some books I may find helpful. I was so grateful to her
Then, the little fella came and charmed her with his cute voice. Plus, he called her, “姐姐”, jiě jie and not “阿姨” ā yí LOL The little Casonova seemed to know when to use either one. Don’t kill me if he calls you 阿姨 ā yí, ok?
Thanks to this nice lady, Chinese characters are starting to feel slightly more manageable now. I shall persevere!
I couldn’t tell her, “我 爱 你!!!” (I love you) but I definitely said, “谢谢” xiè xie (thank you) many, many, many times.
Now, wasn’t that a nice 情人节 (qíng rén jié) Valentine’s Day?
- Going to the Library (图书馆 tú shū guǎn)
- China is zhōng guó (中国) or the Middle Kingdom!
- Setting up a children’s home library
- REVIEW: Berlitz Mandarin Chinese Phrase Book
- The 300 Chinese character challenge?