ME AS A NOVICE IN THE JAPANESE LANGUAGE

This is an article where I have tried to concisely explain all about my journey of learning Japanese language. It might turn you Nostalgic with all those insane efforts that you took to get along with the basics of Japanese language. I have come up with all the difficulties I had faced as a novice in the Japanese language.

I am an Automobile Engineering graduate of 2018 batch. Having graduated as an engineer in India, which is a big market for many countries around the world, as every engineer thinks, I was hoping to start a better and a bright career for me. I had similar thoughts as a typical Indian engineer to work in Government sectors. Let us not forget the fact that not all the graduates are being employed and that not all  engineering  graduates land on the  field or work that they had dreamt of. As India produces enormous amount of engineers every year, each graduate has to be unique in their own way.

It is this thought which instigated me to opt for learning a Foreign Language. But I lost in the midway as I couldn't find a reliable source or driving force that would take me to the destination which is knowing a Foreign Language. However I had the motivation and zeal to learn a Foreign Language. That's the time when I was bestowed with an opportunity to learn Japanese in the 3rd year of my UG course. I had been provided with two options: Japanese and German. Tough, isn't it? 9 out 10 would go with German. But you know what? I was that only one to go with Japanese Language.

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.

Nelson Mandela

We had been provided with a Japanese teacher by the institution and had Japanese classes four times a week mostly on weekends. Take it from me, one needs a guide or an aid while learning a new language which is inevitable if you  have a stipulated period within which you have to get it done. There are many nuances in the language that you would only be able to understand through experience. It would be a tedious process and it is this which demands for teachers who would have experienced it and could teach us with all their experiences. I still remember those days when I was just a beginner, I used to see my Japanese teacher so differently as an ancient tribe, as Japanese sounded more like a jargon spoken between the tribes of the North Sentinel Island.

The first time I took the Japanese Language Proficiency Test(JLPT) in December 2016 was a disaster for me, because the question paper has nothing in English or any other language except the instructions of taking the examination. I didn’t  know where to start and where to end. I found it too hard to recognize Kanji which without all the three sections especially the first two sections would be impossible to score in. The Aftermath of which is I lost the exam by 1 mark when I realized the importance of one unit of a thing in terms of marks, time and money. For example I stopped procrastination because an hour is comprised of 3600 seconds, out of which each and every second matters.  It took months for me to get along with Japanese and understand the nature of it. And finally I understood all the basics and nuances in my own way and also was able to pass the next JLPT.

 When I got graduated in the year 2018 I had N4 level of proficiency in Japanese. N4 level, for me gives you all the basics of the language. So that it's a license for you to go on with your Japanese learning without any aid or assistance. But with N4 proficiency which is limited to only text books, it was very hard to understand fundamental conversations in Japanese because like every other languages, Japanese too has text book language and spoken language. A very interesting part of Japanese language is that it has a unique way of writing which is known as Kanji, one of the three scripts of the language. So I never felt down during this wonderful journey. Whenever I read or listen Japanese in news, articles and anime I really feel the worth of working so hard on learning this wonderful language. With all the efforts paying me off, now I am able to converse in Japanese with Native Japanese and even hold seminar in Japanese. I am happy to reveal that I have business level proficiency in Japanese which bestowed me with an opportunity to work in Japan. In my upcoming posts I’ll let you guys know about everything that I came across learning Japanese, which includes the reason for choosing Japanese,  the honors and rewards that I got as a Japanese speaker, the way I got placed in a Japanese company .etc.  

India

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