The last post I wrote about learning Finnish was in April (almost 7 months ago now!). I had just moved to Helsinki and I was a few weeks into a 2 month intensive Finnish language course. I have been studying Finnish for over a year now. 8 months in Finland and 4.5 in the UK.
So, on returning to Finland for another winter season as a Husky Guide, I think it is about time to explain: Why I am doing this challenge? What I have been up to for the last few months? Did I achieved my language goal? What are my next steps…
I have been thinking about this a lot recently. There was a particularly uninspiring day where I questioned whether it is even worth it… So, I think a re-evaluation of why I am learning the language will be beneficial.
- Curiosity – To see if I can…
- To learn about the culture and people on a deeper level – Languages are there to communicate with others, through writing, speaking and listening. But, every language has unique qualities, and by learning it, you will understand more about the culture.
- To be able to communicate with people in their own tongue – Although many Finns do speak good English, many don’t and it always feels great to have exchanges in the native language.
- To challenge myself – Challenges help me focus my energy and time, and I enjoy doing them and find them rewarding and interesting.
- To learn – I’ve always wanted to speak another language, fluently, so… (next point)
- Why not? – There’s nothing to lose by trying.
- I work and live here – I am a trained guide, and will be working a second season here now. It will only help if I have a good grasp of Finnish, and being in the country is the perfect place to learn.