Résumé and Language

Résumé and Language

I have come to realize that I am fond of learning different cultures. And among cultures, it is the language that seems to be coming into my life for some reason. So when I enlist languages in my resume, the languages that appear are Nepali, English, Hindi, Newari, and German consecutively in terms of the level of reading, writing and speaking.

Firstly it is Nepali. I am from Nepal and Nepali is the national language of my country. So I grew up speaking, reading and writing in Nepali. Some might have a problem with that and it is a different story. I will come to that later. So basically since Nepali is the language which is present all over Nepal, I think it is the language that binds us, the Nepalese people. No matter what caste or ethnic group you belong to, people can always exchange words in Nepali.

Secondly I have written English because after Nepali if there was any language I spoke or wrote or read was in English. Since I studied in a private school, you can imagine how much English language was emphasized. In addition to reading and writing more than half of the subjects in English, speaking in English was also stressed. Most private schools have a rule: speak in English within the school premise. If not students are asked to pay a fine. (I am thankful to have an opportunity to learn English.) It was a different thing that as soon as I used to come out of the school, I conversed in Nepali. I can say that conversing in English was not felt as comfortable as it is nowadays albeit people knew English.

Thirdly, I should say Hindi; influence of the movies. Nepal is surrounded by India from three sides: east, west and south. So it is certain to have some kind of influence of India. I will avoid going political. So, among many things, it is the Hindi language that unconsciously and consciously roots in people of Nepal. They understand Hindi as a result of watching Hindi movies, and listening to Hindi songs. It is a different aspect that most Nepalese don’t like to speak in Hindi even when they can.  And reading wont be a problem too as the script is the same as in Nepali: Devnagari Lipi.

Fourthly, it is Newari. As I mentioned above me speaking in Nepali might be a problem to some. I also said that despite belonging to any caste or ethnic group people speak in Nepali throughout the country. Though it is the national language, each ethnic group except Brahmins, has its own mother tongue.And I belong to Newari ethnic group whose mother language is Newari. That means the first advanced language I would have learned could have been Newari. But I consciously brought this language into use quite later when I was in my 20’s. I understand Newari and I can also reply in Newari. However, I am still in the process of learning. And in terms of writing, I cannot write even an alphabet. I can write using Devnagari Lipi used for Nepali. But the Ranjana Lipi, that is how one actually writes Newari, it is far far away from me. However, I realized the importance of my language and thus started conversing in Newari with my parents and friends. My mother teases and at times gets frustrated over my Newari words. I tend to muddle with the pronunciation which at times doesn’t even exist. As per the text, the alphabets, I want to learn my ethnic alphabets and I do practice whenever I can.

Coming to the final in my list, I have German or as it is said in Germany ‘Deutsch.’ I studied A1 and A2 of Deutsch language from Goethe- Zentrum as I was planning to study in Germany. I did pretty good with this language. It is difficult but as my German instructor told, “for a Nepali learning Deutsch is easier as it has some common ground ‘Sanskrit’ and similar essence behind the words.” After completing two levels, I obtained a basic skill of reading, writing and speaking in Deutsch. However, in absence of practice, I don’t feel much confident. Yet, I think I can say I can communicate a little in Deutsch. If I keep on practicing and learning more, I will do fine with this language.

That is,  I have put five languages in my resume which I am good at or at least have some basic skills in. But the list of language that I have learned or I am learning does not end there. I would add Japanese and Dutch to it as well. Of course one was my past and the other is my present.

After I completed my SLC, my tenth grade, my parents suggested about learning Japanese language. Back then we used to have a wholesale shop especially of women clothing. From locals to foreigners we used to have different customers. So one day one of my friend’s parents suggested me and my parents that I should learn Japanese since we used to have Japanese customers. No matter what the reason was, since I only had a few months and the Japanese language course was two months, I found it a nice idea. I completed the first level and passed with good remarks. I wanted to join for the higher levels but unfortunately the institute shifted somewhere else and I never came across it after my many search. College days started and though I wanted to learn Japanese, something kept me away from it. My first official international language learning ended there.

Today, if someone asks me what I am doing, I would have to say I am into some sports and mostly learning Dutch language. It has been three months that I came to the Netherlands with my husband. People do speak English here but it is never a loss to learn a new langugage and culture. So for past two months I have been learning Dutch under a Dutch lady. My class is not a professional, formal one. It has especially been arranged for the spouses for free. Once a week on Wednesdays spouses who can join gather together. After two months of joining the class and using Duolingo, I find comfortable to be among the Dutch. I dont know how far I will go with my Dutch learning. But I do want to be able to speak, write, and read in Dutch. If not expertly, at least with a considerate level.

Thirty years and my life is filled with learning different things at different levels. But most importantly I am happy that I am fond of learning different languages. I look forward to learn Spanish, French and Mandarin. Sounds scary but interesting it shall be. MV

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