Friday, 6 July 2012

Day 4 – Poděbrady (5th July)

There are good things and bad things to having a Russian roommate. On the one hand, it’s amazing practice and I’m learning/re-learning a lot of Russian words, and even some grammar. On the other hand, I’m realising just how little Russian I know, especially the everyday conversational vocab. However, I’ve only been in the Czech Republic for four days, and I feel like my Czech has already come on in leaps and bounds, especially vocab wise, so hopefully it will be the same when I go to Tomsk in February. 

Anyway, yesterday after learning how to decline interrogative (who? what?), indefinite (someone/something) and negative (no-one, nothing) pronouns, we started learning family vocab. Language Note: Including the word for brother-in-law which is švagr and had us doing Mafia impressions for an embarrassingly long period of time… At lunchtime we went to a restaurant called Bílá Růze, which translates as the White Rose, where I had goulash and dumplings, or guláš a knedlíky. Whilst it was delicious, it was very stodgy.
After lunch, we went to a lecture on Czech Songs and Dances. We started off by singing about four songs, the first one we sung being my favourite. It was called “Jednou budem dál” and I’ll try include links to it and the other songs we sang at the end of the post. After singing, we went outside and were taught the moves to the Polka. Essentially, it was a simple four beat/move dance, two steps to the left, then two to the right, but add another person, twirling and a baking hot day and it got complicated rather quickly…Nonetheless it was great fun! We then did another dance, which involved holding hands in a circle and going backwards and forwards, a bit like the hokey cokey. I think we get to dance again at the farewell party, and whilst I’m looking forward to dancing again, I’m already dreading having to leave it – I love it here!

Once the lecture was over, we headed to the nearby lake, taking a detour by an ice-cream parlour, where one scoop cost 10 korun, the equivalent of 33p!! We took a massive detour to the lake, but it was beautiful. There was a man-made beach leading down to the shore, complete with changing rooms and slides. The lake itself was quite cool, and got deep very quickly, but the temperature was amazing  on such a hot day. I swam out quite far with Sheffield!Nick, then swam back to hang out with S, Jones and Mike. Whilst we were mucking around in the water, we noticed a rather affectionate fly hanging around S. She naturally tried to get rid of it, but it refused to budge. After out ten minutes of useless flailing, whilst the rest of us died laughing, she finally managed to drive the fly away from her – on to me. After I flailed around for ten minutes, whilst again the others laughed, I drove it back to her. She repeated her previous actions, and the fly moved on to Mike. This circle kept repeating itself, with the fly going from S to someone else then back, whilst everyone else laughed, until we decided that four language students should be able to take on one slutty fly. At which point the fly disappeared. Coward.

We went straight from the lake to a restaurant for dinner, during which it started to rain and a thunderstorm started up, just as it had done every evening so far. To be fair, the storms do lower the temperature and make it bearable to sleep, and they are very beautiful to watch since I’ve started getting used to them. It was after running back to the dorm to try and avoid getting wet (which naturally we all failed at drastically) that S, Jones and I found out we had our results! I got a 2:1, which I’m quite happy with :)

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