Ma Naveed ke sath Urdu perta hoon!
Hopefully the title of this post translates to something like ‘I study Urdu with Naveed’…if not, I am a terrible student and will probably be kept in for detention this week, if it does, then it’s straight the to top of the class (of one, currently!).
For the last few months, I have been having Urdu lessons with Naveed Rehman, a Pakistani Urdu teacher whom I discovered with the power that is Google! Naveed has been coming once or twice most weeks, and puts up with my last minute changes in plans and schedules and even a month or so off due to travel. He has been great. A top guy and has a great way of teaching me, and the family. We have all been taking lessons, although the family has been away for the last couple of months.
One thing I have stuck by in my couple of overseas ‘assignments’ is to make an effort to learn some of the local language. When in Dubai, I gave Arabic a crack, to some success, and was able to at least ask for a few things and greet, thank etc. I am attempting to do the same here, with Urdu and Naveed is the ‘lucky’ man! I must admit, I am finding it most challenging!
The language is tough for me. The sentence structure and order is completely different to my mother tongue, so not only do you need to recall the words, but then think how to put them. A simple ‘What is this?’ or ‘Ye Kia Hey?’, literally translates to ‘This what is?’ so you can see my challenge.
I will persevere, and although it does seem like two steps forward, one step back, all is in the right direction, and it helps to pick up the odd word here and there when I am in a business or social setting, and I find at least I can follow some discussions now, even if not being able to respond…
One good thing, is the language is a combination of many- Arabic, English, Hindi, Persian etc….and many English words are thrown into the discussion…car, is car, school is school etc…so i fully understand those ones at least! My all time favourite word so far is still ‘chokidar’ or gatekeeper…for some reason I love this word…’Ye chokidar hey’ or this is the gatekeeper! See pretty good aren’t I?
In all seriousness, the key is to practice and have the confidence to practice, which is where I am failing, even though I work with 100% Urdu speakers I am intimidated to practice! I feel I am failing, but then when Naveed comes over we have a 10-15 minute discussion all in Urdu and I can do it…often with my little red book of notes to help…who knows, one day I may get it…and as I keep telling my work colleagues…jsut beware, as I may understand more than you realise!
But in all seriousness, if there are any English speakers here who want a great teacher, Naveed is the man. He works in Lahore, but also has students in Lahore, and some Aussies in Australia via Skype…so for everyone coming to visit…maybe a Skype lesson or two before you come…and he is very well priced at 1000 Rupees for one hour session (about $12-13AUD) although the Business Coach in me is telling him to put his prices up (but not for me obviously!).
Naveed can be reached at +92 300 420 0729 or via E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
I strongly recommend him to any budding Urdu speaker!
Alaah ha feesh
Aussie in Lahore