21 September 2011

I wrote to someone recently about the project I mentioned a few days ago. I wrote it in English as, well, I can only really speak English. It has been suggested that I’d have much more luck if I contacted them using Esperanto.

Now, although my friend offered to translate it for me, I figured I would give it a go myself. Hopefully I would have learned enough to at least give it a good shot. Unfortunately it turns out that translating an email is a lot harder than it first sounds.

First, I use a lot of colloquial English and I tend to be a bit more “flowery” in my writing style. Turns out that flowery English doesn’t map well to bare bones Esperanto. I got to the fourth line and decided that this wasn’t going to get me very far.

Part of the reason for that is that certain terms in English like “I recently started” might not make sense. If I translate that to Mi lastatempe startis, is that right? Can this form of the word start mean to start a task as well as to start on a journey? I’m beginning to see why it’s very useful for a dictionary to have example sentences and translations! It really makes a huge difference… Anyway I think this is a bit out of my reach right now, especially as some of the vocabulary is technical in nature.

I’m not giving up on my journey though. I will be able to do this soon, just not after two weeks I guess :)

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