Monday, 9 April 2007

Ze Language

I have started learning Russian. While gesticulating wildly and drawing stick figures in the dirt will probably be our primary means of communications on the rally, I thought it couldn't hurt to know some key phrases in Russian. Phrases like "Our car has broken down." and "Please you don't kill us!". You know, the basics.

I'll let you know how it goes.


just be. said...

Have you heard about "point it" or the german "ohnew├Ârterbuch"?

Sometimes it could help, in a way.

Richard & Martin said...

Hey, those things could be handy! Still, the Russian should prove very useful while trying to decipher the various road signs along the way, so I won't stop learning it

I also doubt there's an icon for "please don't kill me" in the books, but maybe they're made for travel to Uzbekistan as well.

Andrey said...

Fortunately, the road signs in Russia are pretty much the same as in the rest of Europe (did I really just say that Russia is a part of Europe? well, never mind).

There are two difficulties, though:
1. There are road signs, but in most places there's no road to speak of :(
2. The signs are all in Cyrillic alphabet. So if I were you I probably wouldn't try to learn Russian - maybe just the basic phrases and making sure that locals can understand you. Don't sweat too much, it's no English, Ze Prononsieishn in Rashn is Mach Isier.

However, I would really recommend you to ensure that you could read Russian, i.e. mentally convert Russian city names into their Latin alphabet equivalents. You should be able to learn that skill pretty quickly. Then you can check whether you really learned this by practicing on Russian maps :)

Richard & Martin said...

Yeah, being able to read the road signs is one of the main reasons for learning Russian. I honestly doubt I'll get much further than the alphabet and some basic phrases, but that alone should prove useful.