My lack of posting has left the area of lazy or busy and entered a stage of simply negligent. I recognize that someone must be looking at this site, and it is so terribly annoying to check a dying blog. However, I do recommend people get serious about RSS and get something like Safari's checker to keep up to date.
Anyway, life is good. I have a Japanese girlfriend that I care for, duh. We spend a lot of time together, which is bad for my Chinese but typically good for me. Balancing Chinese and each other has been the most awkward relationship issue I have had to deal with. My future hopefully includes Chinese, I want it to, but that is ultimately optional. Rie really wants to learn Chinese, and use it in day to day life. She only has a year here, at most, maybe only four more months.
As such, we have to schedule a great deal of apart time, not simply to be alone, but because of a tangible reason for the future. Her English has been improving dating me of course, but it can only so much. She studies with a markably veracity, but that time must be spent on Chinese.
She actually has caught up to my Chinese in two months, largely because she has a fast moving one on one class and I have a very slow group class. I am completely unwilling to let her pass me, so now I am studying a chapter a head, at this rate, I will end up studying far far ahead of my supposed level.
We now speak a great deal of Chinese together, but its very ugly, and arguably bad for both of us. Without the correction and of a native speaker, its good to think in Chinese, but not necessarily that helpful.
I want to learn Japanese, but that would just confuse my Chinese right now. However, I am trying to become as fluent _sounding_ as possible. I have now mastered a few collection of words, that if used at the right times, sounds like I speak Japanese, example.
Them: Some complex Japanese idea...
Them: Yeah, really.
Me: But...Well...Okay, I understand, whatever...
Them: Probably more Japanese
My Chinese is doing fine, but my typing and computer literacy is far ahead of my speaking. My speaking is just ugly.
When I get a one on one class I will be able to learn at a real pace, but right now, there is too much stopping.
Anyway, speaking of which, I should study.
However, I recommend this blog for people interested in Chinese - http://crossculturalfamily.blogspot.com/. His last entry on language affecting us really hit me because of my current relationship, and, well life.
I will post more in the coming days.