I love going out with DN and his friends. Actually, when it’s just me, DN and Via, there’s a good chance things will go well and the night will be full of laughter and adventure. However in some circumstances, and with other friends, the conversation is predominantly Hindi, which leaves me out of the loop. When conversations are carried away in Hindi, I tend to space out and find ways to entertain myself. There’s always a certain point in the night when people turn to me and say, “Talk. You’re not talking.” or “Do Americans ever laugh?” or “Why aren’t you saying anything?”
To which I always have to respond: “You know I can’t understand 90% of what you are saying, right?”
One person recently replied to my response with: “But… ‘My Hindi Heart’ ..?”
Yes, My Hindi Heart. A love of the Hindi language. The name doesn’t imply I’m a master, just that I’m learning.
I know a few words in Hindi, I can read Hindi at a very basic level. I can speak a little, though I understand more than I speak… Yet I still don’t know enough to keep up, let alone respond. I can tell you my name, ask your name and other basic questions. I’m still learning.
I don’t want my friends to keep the conversation going in English for me, but I’d love to be able to understand what is going on. It’s frustrating at times, and also encouraging.
You can bet I’ll be studying Hindi more, in my free time!