Romanian: Servus!

Well, I’m afraid the time has come. It’s time to bid Romanian adieu or as the natives say, Ceau! And that’s “chow,” not “sew” or “cou.” And to be honest, I’m kind of glad.

Before I go on, I’d like to give a HUGE shoutout to Dana McMahan, who encouraged me to do this. And if you are reading this, you should probably read her blog Traveling McMahans, which is all about traveling and food, subjects anyone around the world can toast to.

Also, some small changes are coming soon. The header will be redone and I will post all the pertinent links which have helped me along the way.

SUMMARY: Romanian, in my opinion, seems to be a language of separated ex-lovers who still yearn to be together. It embodies everything you think of when it comes to Romance languages: Latin-based, beautiful and spoken with ease. At the same time, despite numerous conquests from its home country, Romanian holds on to its roots considerably because the language is relatively unchanged from its earlier forms. Add in influences from its tumultuous history and a sprinkle of Roma character and you’ve got a refined, centuries-old language. It is not an easy one for the average American English speaker to recognize (as there aren’t very many), even for those who are familiar with other Romance languages. If you speak Italian, Romanian may sound vaguely familiar.

FINAL IMPRESSION: Part of the problem I had with browsing Romanian was that the language reminded me a little bit too much of Latin, which I have never, ever liked. Many of the words tend to end in “-scu” and its conjugation patterns were recognizable, yet at the same time the language still seemed remotely unfamiliar. A lot of the time it felt like I was trying to reactivate my initial interest but eventually I surrendered and tuned out.  I think it sounds even more golden (and decipherable) when sung. Still, nothing really jumped out at me when listening to it.

EVALUATION:
Intelligibility: 2
Complexity: 3
Resonance: 3
Continuation Factor: 2

On a final note, I leave you with “Pe-o Margine De Lume” which was sung by Nico and Vlad, the Romanian representatives in this year’s Eurovision contest (think American Idol meets the World Cup). I think the video articulates my frustration with Romanian: La-de-da and ho-hum yet still very charming.

COMING UP: Macedonian

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