Wednesday, June 17, 2009

おはよ う ござ います。

Which is Japanese Hiragana for "Good Morning".

It sounds like: "Oh ha yo go za ee maas."

We're learning to read Hiragana, which is used for phonetic spelling of Japanese words that either don't have Kanji characters, or are intended for beginners such as ourselves. :D

We'll also learn the very similar set of Katakana characters at some point. These are mostly used for phonetically spelling foreign words.

Among other things, there are no "L" or "V" sounds in these sets, so you quickly understand the difficulty that the Japanese have in pronouncing English words.

According to Wikipedia: "In Japanese, the R sound is pronounced as an alveolar lateral flap (ɺ), articulated with the tongue flapped against the hard palate behind the front teeth, so that it sounds like a Spanish soft R. Because the Japanese language does not have a separate equivalent for the English L, native Japanese speakers not fluent in English are often unable to distinguish between the R and L sounds.[1]"

so there you have it. we'll post pictures of this weekend's trip to Tokiwa Park in Ube shortly!

take care!

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