Saturday, July 30, 2011 | By: CHIMI DORJI

Hindi, will i ever know perfectly?

“By the time you complete your course you will know Hindi perfectly“, said many of my mates before coming to Indian when I told them I’m placed in India. Being I hail from far-flung village they knew it I barely know a word of Hindi, which may apply to all most all students who were born and bought up in the village.
Being  born down to the dust, brought up in the jungle almost like a jungle creature, just merely born as a human creature, no bare minimum entitlements as a human were offered, not deliberately but world itself was like that during 1990s still laboring for globalization, transformation, etc. None to blame. What to say about Bhutan during 1990s it was far behind in everything but today no more Bhutan is at same level it used to be in 1990s, far better today. Everyone knows that. Today, we have road at our door steps, electricity, and lot more. Even in my village some villagers own television.
During my time forget about television, there were no road, no electricity and no solar panels either. To the nearest road minimum we had to walk 7-8 hours. I still remember how we used to rush when our head master wanted any one of us to go for shopping of his necessities or for school party to the nearest town. Because when we get to visit town and see different cars plying once in a blue moon, may be once in a year we used to feel so happy as if we have reached to our dream land. By chance if we get a lift or get to see television then what more we would have wanted to be happy?, so excited we would be.
Candidly speaking I saw television properly only when I reached to Junior High School. Many say they learn Hindi automatically when they watch Hindi serials and movies. That would have been possible only if I were in the town. But sadly I was back in village. I started watching Hindi movies only after reaching here. For some, they learn Hindi when they are in the school through their friends in case if they happen to meet friends who are well versed with Hindi. But throughout my school life until plus two I did not meet any friends of such sort. So how would have been possible for me to learn foreign language in this condition? It was no way then, although I knew it, its importance.
I still remember so many funny things I had been through when I came to India for the first time, for not being able to communicate in Hindi.
The only hope was when I came to India for study. As my friends said I too thought that I would be able to know Hindi by the time I complete my course which could be the only benefit I could reap besides my course, being in India for half a decade.
Do you know Hindi?, asked some of my friends . Not bad, I defended. But it’s been four years in India now, so where am ‘I standing today then? In four fours did I learn something as I expected? Did I really know Hindi “not that bad?
After coming here everything was just topsy-turvy, nothing went as expected. I being placed in the south, it has been very difficult to learn. The University where I study being a National University, students come from all over India. Owing to their diverse regional language some of them hardly know Hindi, but just a handful, not many, although they know their regional language very well which differs from place to place.
 In other colleges I was told that they communicate mostly in Hindi and they were being taught in Hindi as well. Owing to which some of them knew it within a year though they pissed off in the beginning. But here it seems students were born with English on their month. They communicate mostly in English. When it comes to Hindi, sometimes they speak within themselves fully or just few verses in cocktail with English. But whenever they speak their speaking is not lesser than our monks chanting prayers, so fast. I hardly get it. There I lost blinking.
I would be the first person to shout, ‘in English please’, if they make any announcement in the class in Hindi. But sometimes I have to laugh with them without getting what humorous thing they said which is why sometimes I wish I was also born with television.
The persons we communicate in Hindi here includes cooks, security guards, non teaching staffs and auto drivers. They don’t know English. They are the ones whom we communicate in Hindi most of the time. Even if we don’t know Hindi with them we have to make it out one way or other. So, I have to face it with little I know. Sometimes I find them shaking their heads which seems they don’t understand my Hindi when my Hindi goes mixing with my broken Nepali. Sometimes I try throwing my broken Hindi to my Indian friends which I find it comfortable while throwing to them whatever I know but on return I’m dead, I hardly get what they are telling. There again I lost scratching my head. I surrender then. But with auto drivers I never surrender. They speak kind of typical Hindi here which I can get it at least some part. So, with them my broken Hindi works well.
Before coming here I would not have known even if I were to be sold to somebody but today, after living here for four years, occasionally speaking in broken Hindi with aforementioned persons and watching many Hindi movies with subtitles, I understand at least something as well as I can speak to some extent, at least basics though brokenly. Nobody can sale me now rather with my little basics of Hindi I can even tour whole India. Nobody can ridicule me either, with those Hindi slangs.  Before I never used to go to city alone but today I’m able to go alone.
I just know little bit of basics still then I’m happy. At least, something is better than nothing. I know one day or other I may even get to deal people who speak only Hindi but I’m hopeful that I can handle it with my little basics which by the time it’ll get matured, if not fully at least to some extent, capable of understanding what they are saying and convincing what I’m trying to say. . Long way to go for perfecting ……………

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