Or lack thereof. ㅠㅠ
After finishing the last set of Korean classes in our university last March, I continued with my self studying all throughout my summer vacation. I followed the Online Sogang Program. I started with the Novice I, even if it’s below my level, to review and probably pick-up a few new things and some vocabulary along the way. I think I only managed to reach some lessons from Novice III when school started. And after the previous semester kicked in last June I wasn’t able to study any Korean – at all!
My load last semester was full and too difficult for me to handle. As much as I would like to continue self-studying, I wasn’t able to do so, since I barely manage to finish school requirements on time. Also I was not doing well with my Japanese, so it just made me guilty if I will study more Korean when I was so behind with Japanese (and this could be one of the many reasons why I hated studying Japanese all the more 😛 ).
I do have a language exchange partner in our university though. A language exchange program was organized by my 선생님 and I joined. I end up cancelling most of our meetings, but we were one of the few pairs who managed to finish the program until the end (because most pairs quit). My language partner is great. She is good in explaining things and is very nice too. We usually just have free conversation for an hour. I took notes. But I didn’t have time to review them. I don’t think one hour a week (plus cancellations here and there) has helped me improve my speaking skills. It may probably have helped me retain my current skill (if we can call it a skill O.o) though.
I tried preparing for TOPIK too. But I end up just finishing 1.5 page of one of the previous exams. And have only attended one review session conducted by my 선생님.
I’m just so glad to be a fan of Kim Sun Ah though – a BIG fan. Big enough to make sure I won’t miss any episodes of her drama; to sub her drama; to follow her me2day; to chat and talk with her and her fans; to translate for non-Korean speaking fans – despite the fact that I actually don’t have time to do them.
Fangirling helped me keep myself exposed to the language. Most of my previous classmates who are not attending Korean classes anymore started forgetting things, but I did not (I want to believe I did not XD). I still feel comfortable listening, reading and writing (speaking is a different story ㅠㅠ). I also learned a lot of new words and expressions from my interaction with Kim Sun Ah and her Korean fans and from my desperate attempts to translate stuff.
I was backreading an online forum for Scent Of A Woman and was surprised when I saw an old post of mine stating that I can’t understand anything from Episode 1. Another old post states that I did understand a few things from Episode 2 but I refuse to translate because I was not confident. Because I was actually translating live some of the interesting scenes from the last 4 or 5 episodes.
I’m also surprised with myself that I can now write lengthy posts at DC Inside Gallery in straight Korean.
So, I may have improved after all.
However I’m still frustrated, especially whenever I read what I have written. The length can be deceiving. The sentences were all the same pattern. And although I’m glad I can now express the things I want to say, I don’t think I can express it with my sincere emotions and feelings. And they are all very erroneous too!
I was also listening to few old recordings I did several months ago and was surprised at how I was able to talk in Korean before. Yeah, let’s not talk about my current speaking skills anymore.
I feel like I wasted so much time these past months not studying Korean. ㅠㅠ