Let's not be haphazard about this one. Hebex starts in only 18 days, but about a year and a half ago there was another linguistic interest that took over. I was really serious about it last year before going to Thailand, teaching myself to read, write (which I can barely do in Chinese) and speak the language of the people there. When I landed in Thailand, I was pleased and relieved to be able to tell people what I wanted, where I wanted to go, how much I was willing to pay for something and even chat a bit about life.
A year later (after two months of semi-uninspired, transient studying of Italian), I return to find I can speak with some people, but that even after a quick three day cram, I've forgotten some of what I knew (or it at least doesn't come to me as quickly); I just don't use it in Taipei.
But I have the basics down pat. I know many of the consonants and am still working on the chaos of the many vowels and the tones they represent. Long story short, I have developed a great foundation for the language, and if I could keep a solid pace, learning bit by bit and finding areas and ways to practice and maintain it, I could go back in six months or a year and truly be conversational. Not just tourist-speak either.
The goal? I've decided to learn two (2) Thai vocabulary words a day. Not sure when I'm going to start... probably today. Tomorrow. Two a day. That doesn't seem like much, and in my efforts to use it more, I'm sure I'll be looking up more words than just two a day, but I want to learn to read, write and say them correctly and entwine them into my vocabulary such that they'll be useful and at my disposal long-term.
"Slowly makes the blade beautiful." or, as my grandfather used to say (says my dad) "There's somehow never time to do it right the first time, but always time to do it over."
I think this is going to be my next serious language. I'll post the words on here for each day as much as I can.