Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Trouble Learning Portuguese

Speaker 1: You know? I am going ficar these books. They are going ficar around $40. That is great.

Speaker 2: Ficar???

Speaker 1: I fico concentrated on reading a good book for hours on end.

Speaker 2: Fico???

Speaker 1: It is even good ficar at home on cold days with a good book. At times, I fico afraid of ficar alone, because my house fica in a bad neighborhood, but . . .

Speaker 2: Wait! Wait!

Speaker 1: What is the problem? You are confused because of my frequent use of the verb ficar? I will explain.

Now, a little insight into my Portuguese lesson today. I have previously learned the verb "ficar". It means "to stay" or "to remain". Now, you read the dialogue above that I had in my Portuguese lesson today. (I translated everything but ficar for you, so it is understandable.) Now, you tell me what "ficar" translates to in English.

Here's the thing, ficar can mean any number of things. It may mean any of the following:
to stay
to remain
to be
to buy
to aquire
to cost
to get

Oh, the beauty of learning a new language! (And not to mention the frustration-ugghhhh!) The other fun part is that they have other words for each of the words that I mention above. So I am pretty certain I am just going to avoid using the word "ficar" in any form! I have other options and plan to use them!

(I should have known this was going to be tough though - the Brasilians we know who speak English told us that they believe Portuguese is much more difficult to learn than English. I'm a believer!)

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