Since my last post big changes have happened with my Italian …. due to the fact that I bought a decent textbook to work through, and found 3 native Italian speakers to practice conversation with regularly !!
Having spent the best part of 10 years learning by myself from books, and often not really understanding things properly, not exactly knowing how a phrase should be used in reality, I can’t explain how amazing it is to be able to ask an expert – and get an answer straight away!
For example, today I learned the word ‘Anzi’ which the dictionary defined as having 2 meanings – 1) On the contrary 2) Or rather, or better still. The example in my textbook however explained it as having a meaning that is more like “actually, wait a minute, i’m changing my mind to the exact opposite” . This left me wondering, in that case – which was it ??
Fortunately, I was able to ask for examples from my friend who explained it like this :
“Praticamente si usa quando immediatemente cambi idea su qualcosa. per esempio, Vado a fare la spesa dopo , Anzi, meglio andarci subito perchè dopo c’è traffico”
In practice you use it when you immediately change your mind about something. For example you might say ‘I’m going food shopping later, actually no, better to go now because there’ll be traffic later.”
The benefits of finding a language exchange partner (they want to learn English, you help them with this whilst you practice Italian!) are pretty much limitless if you want to improve your Italian but aren’t able to actually go live in Italy 🙂 It is hard to assess your own progress objectively but within a month of having lots of conversations, sometimes for a couple of hours daily, I feel like my fluency has doubled !
After the above explanation I replied to my friend, “Grazie, me l’hai spiegato meglio del libro di testo” … “Thankyou, you explained it better than the textbook”. and there’s no way I would have been able to construct that sentence a month ago…….