Welcome back or Dobrodošli nazad!
Today, i would like to tell here, in this topic, what is the reason behind my decision to learn srpski jezik and how hard it is.
So, why Serbian?
Well, it is a long story... My father used to be a window manufacturer in Turkey. One evening, while we were on our way to home, he told me that he wanted to change his occupation after 20 years. He was considering to become a contractor so that according to him, he could earn money in a much easier way than window manufacturing. I knew my father and how much he hated to earn money without almost doing nothing. So, i advised him to establish a logistic company so that he could work and he would not get tired that much. He liked this idea and he started to search the conditions to establish a logistic company in Turkey. But, it was not as easy as it seemed. Because, you had to have at least 10 trucks and 150.000€ in cash.
Afterwards, he decided to establish the company in Bulgaria. We had to have only one truck and 30.000€ in cash (and also, as Bulgaria is a EU country, it has better opportunities for transportation). Later, he said to me that i had to learn Bulgarian until i graduate and take over the company. Well, it would be easy to find a course for Bulgarian or a Bulgarian teacher if i owned the magical lamp of Aladdin.
One day, one of my friends' addiction for Serbian came to my mind. She used to take private lessons from a Serbian lady. I thought that Serbian was similar to Bulgarian and by it would be easy to switch from Serbian to Bulgarian. So, i hired her and this is how my adventure began.
How hard it is?
To me, Serbian is like German without articles. Why? Because there aren't any articles in Serbian at all and both have specific words for some international words. For example:
Traffic = Saobraćaj, Message = Poruka, Vienna = Beč, Dance = Ples
Also, there are some international words that do not have 100% equivalents in Serbian.
Ambulance = Hitna Pomoć (Urgent Help), Nurse = Medicinska Sestra (Medical Sister), Campus = Studentski Grad (Student Town)
Like every language on earth, Serbian is also affected by several languages. According to my teacher, Serbian is mostly affected by French. But, it is definitely not true. Serbian took more words from German, Italian and Turkish than French. Frizer (Barber), Tepih (Carpet), Špic (Rush Hour), Fakultet (Faculty), Univerzitet (University), Blic (Flash) are some German words whereas Avantura (Adventure), Fontana (Fountain), Majstor (Repairman), Ćao (Bye) etc. are Italian. I would love to add the words with Turkish origin too, but i wouldn't be able to finish this article till the morning. :)
There are also some words taken from French such as Avion (Airplane), Plakar (Closet), Plafon (Ceiling) and Šarmantan (Charming). These are probably the only words which the Serbian use whereas we the Turk do not.
What is my opinion on it?
As my grandparents were immigrants from Macedonia (but we are pure Turkish products), i've always had an interest on southern slavic languages. But the more i got into the language, the more i loved it. At least to me, Serbian was not hard. It was like a hobby rather than an obligation. The only hard thing was, turning nouns to adjectives. Because there is a rule for that but there are many exceptions (Doesn't it sound like French?). I have never studied at all. I just listened to my teacher and thanks to my marvelous photographic memory, i did not forget them. Sometimes i still hear in my ears the way my teacher expressed me how amazing i am...
I went to Belgrade on September 2015 and when they found out that i am a stranger, they became surprised. The people were different, but their reactions were the same: "Ali pričaš dobro srpski!" (But you speak Serbian well!). Although i had just finished A2! It was a short but really nice experience so that i was able to copy the Serbian accent immediately.
According to my friends, Serbian is useless to learn. But, it brought me a lot. To be honest, much more than i expected. Without it, we could not charge the accumulator of our truck in Copenhagen and depart from there. In Vienna, i could not learn how the automats for the cigarettes work in order to shut my spoiled friends up. And i could not get in touch this much with my ex-Yugoslavian friends who live in Denmark, Germany, France, Austria and Switzerland.
I took Serbian lessons for 18 months. 8 months for A1+A2 and 9 months for B1... I had started to take B2 lessons but after a month, i had to quit it in 12th August 2016 (as i said before, i have a memory of an elephant). Well, the reason is one of the subjects of my article on French.
So, while i am finishing my article, i would like to finish it by saying Doviđenja! but as it will sound a bit Google Translate, i will use a more common way.