Tuesday, October 31, 2017

New Blog Logo

Day 52

This evening I added a new logo to my blog. I hope viewers will like it and appreciate the touch of Italian colors and the symbol for speaking inside a stylized image of a head. I debated removing the Vespa on the previous blog logo, but the new logo has its own appeal, I think.

Ascolta Questo:

This evening I added a new logo to this blog.
Questa sera ho aggiunto un nuovo logo per questo blog.

What do you think?
Cosa ne pensi?
The logo has the main Italian colors.
Il logo ha i colori italiani principali.

You also see the symbol for speaking inside an image of a head.
Vedete anche il simbolo per parlare all'interno di un'immagine di una testa.


Alla prossima!


Monday, October 30, 2017

A Trip to the Pharmacy


Day 51

A trip to the pharmacy was on my to-do list today. So this is the topic for tonight's blog post and an opportunity to discuss la farmacia e il farmacista.

This afternoon I drove to the pharmacy to collect a prescription.
Questo pomeriggio sono andato in farmacia in auto per raccogliere una prescrizione.

I like to use the drive-through window.

Mi piace usufruire del servizio in macchina.

Also convenient is paying with a credit card.
È anche pratico pagare con la carta di credito.

The pharmacist's assistant was friendly and courteous.
L'assistente del farmacista è stato gentile e cortese.

Alla vostra salute e alla prossima!



Sunday, October 29, 2017

Waffle Sale

Day 50

This morning my wife and I attended a waffle breakfast in support of our school cheerleaders. The fundraiser sold plates at $10. The waffles were excellent.

Ascolta Questo:

This morning our school cheerleaders sold waffles to raise money.
Questa mattina nostre cheerleader della scuola venduto waffle per raccogliere fondi.

The plates had waffles and small sausages.

I piatti avevano waffle e piccole salsicce.
The service was fast and courteous.
Il servizio era veloce e cortese.

I wonder if waffles are popular in Italy.
Mi chiedo se i waffle sono popolari in Italia.
Alla prossima!


Saturday, October 28, 2017

Tire Repair


Day 49

Ascolta Questo . . .

Our automobile had a tire with a nail.
La nostra auto aveva un pneumatico con un chiodo.

My wife and I drove to a tire repair shop.
Mia moglie e io siamo andati in un negozio di riparazioni di pneumatici.


We had to wait because there were several other autos ahead of us
Abbiamo dovuto aspettare perché c'erano diverse altre automobili davanti a noi.

The tire was under warranty, so there was no cost for the repair.

Il pneumatico era sotto garanzia, quindi non c'era alcun costo per la riparazione.
Alla prossima!


Friday, October 27, 2017

Renowned Jazz Musician & Friend

Joe Gallardo
Day 48
  1. Had a great visit with a special friend from high school, Joe Gallardo.
  2. Joe has been living in Germany for the past 38 years and is a renowned jazz musician.
  3. His artistry brings the trombone alive like few are capable of doing.
  4. Our dinner was an occasion to recall some of our high school and college memories.
  5. Our prayers are with Joe for his safe return to Germany and his family.
Ascolta Questo:
  1. Ho avuto uno splendido incontro con un compagno di scuola superiore molto speciale, Joe Gallardo.
  2. Joe ha vissuto in Germania per gli ultimi 38 anni ed è un rinomato musicista di jazz.
  3. La sua abilità artistica dà vita al trombone come pochi sono capaci di fare.
  4. La nostra cena è stata un'occasione per rievocare alcuni ricordi delle scuole superiori e del College.
  5. Le nostre preghiere sono per Joe, per un ritorno sicuro in Germania, e per la sua famiglia.
Alla prossima!


Thursday, October 26, 2017

Drill Team Performance

Day 47

Tonight was our granddaughter's last drill team performance at a football game for the year. The football team did not do well this season, but the drill team has been outstanding. Our granddaughter has been doing especially well this year as a freshman.

Ascolta Questo: Questa sera è stata l'ultima prestazione della nostra nipotina a una partita di football per l'anno. La squadra di calcio non ha fatto bene in questa stagione, ma la squadra di trapano è stato eccezionale. La nostra nipotina ha fatto particolarmente bene quest'anno come matricola. 

I'll revisit the Italian above to check the correct usage of words and grammar.

Alla prossima!

 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Stonehenge


Day 46

About ten years ago my wife and I traveled to Europe for the first time, visiting England and France. One of the sites I really wanted to see was Stonehenge. This site was not on our itinerary originally, but we did have the opportunity to visit Stonehenge -- it was a very cold and wet December day. I was not aware at the time that according to many sources Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, that is pronounced sow-in. The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.
Ascolta Questo: Stonehenge, in Inghilterra, è veramente una misteriosa struttura risalente a 2000 anni prima della nascita di Gesù Cristo. Dieci anni fa io e mia moglie abbiamo visitato Stonehenge.
Alla prossima!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Baseball


Day 45

The Houston Astros reached Major League Baseball’s World Series for the first time since 2005 after beating the New York Yankees 4-0 in Game Seven of the American League Championship Series on Saturday. So, let’s look at some baseball Italian vocabulary.

baseball = baseball
perdente = loser
squadra = team
palla = ball
stadio = stadium
vincitore = winner
ricevitore = catcher
strike = strike
fuoricampo = homerun
base = home
lanciatore = pitcher
battitore = batter
esterno = fielder
tifoso = fan
mazza = bat

Ascolta Questo: Sabato gli Houston Astros hanno raggiunto la World Series della Major League di Baseball per la prima volta dal 2005, dopo aver battuto i New York Yankees 4-0 durante la settima gara della American League Championship Series.

Alla prossima!

Monday, October 23, 2017

Texas Jazz Festival


Day 44

Our city has hosted one of the longest-running free jazz festivals in our state, one that had its beginnings almost 60 years ago -- The Texas Jazz Festival. This year's event was the 57th annual festival, and I remember its birth at Del Mar College, in Corpus Christi, Texas. At this year's jazz festival there were over 60 bands from across the state. One of my personal friends and high school classmates is a co-founder of the popular jazz festival. He is Joe Gallardo, and he is an amazing jazz musician who resides in Germany.

I have read that The Umbria Jazz Festival is one of the most important jazz festivals in the world and has been held annually since 1973, usually in the month of July, in Perugia, and surrounding cities of the region of Umbria Italy.

Ascolta Questo: La mia città ha ospitato un festival di jazz per 57 anni. Quest'anno il Festival ha avuto più di 60 bande, dalle scuole superiori ai professionisti. Il mio strumento musicale preferito è il trombone.

Alla prossima!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Shopping

Day 43

A little shopping was on the agenda today, so my wife and I headed for a brand name stores outlet in an adjacent town. We purchased some shoes for ourselves and a raincoat for our granddaughter. For today’s Italian exercise I made a list of words for shopping places in Italian.
  • la posta = the post office
  • il centro commerciale = the shopping center
  • il mercato = the market
  • il supermercato = the supermarket
  • la farmacia = the pharmacy
  • la libreria = the bookstore
  • il negozio = the store
  • il panificio = the bakery
  • la pasticceria = the pastry shop
  • il negozio di musica = the music store
  • il negozio d’abbigliamento = the clothing store
  • il negozio di informatica = the computer store
  • il macellaio = the butcher
  • l’ottico = the optician

Ascolta Questo: Sto cercando scarpe da passeggio. Indosso la taglia sette. Io preferisco un colore blu scuro. Quanto costa queste scarpe? Prendo queste scarpe.

Alla prossima!

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Barbershop

Day 42

This morning I finally set aside some time to get a haircut. Late yesterday I stopped by the popular barbershop but did not have the time to wait -- there were ten individuals already waiting. I thought a visit to a barbershop would be a good topic for today's Italian practice.

So where did the barber pole come from? In the Middle Ages, hair was not the only thing that barbers cut. They also performed surgery, tooth extractions, and bloodletting. Thus, the barber pole was a symbol of the barber-surgeon practice. The barber's history even goes further back in history. They are mentioned in the Bible.

Ascolta Questo: Buongiorno, voglio un taglio regolare dei capelli. Un taglio di forbici, per favore. Non troppo corto e asciughi i miei capelliQuanto costerà questo?

Alla prossima!


Friday, October 20, 2017

Wild Animals

Day 41

The more common words for household pets are dog and cat and in Italian cane and gatto. For this blog post let's look at Italian words for some wild animals.
  • la shimmia = monkey
  • l’elefante = elephant
  • la giraffe = giraffe
  • il gorilla = gorilla
  • la tigre = tiger
  • il leone = lion
  • il pesce = fish
  • l'alligatore = alligator
  • il rinoceronte = rhinoceros
Ascolta Questo: Nella giungla selvaggia ci sono molti animali. lì possiamo trovare una scimmia, leone, elefante, o anche un rinoceronte. In uno giardino zoologico possiamo anche vedere animali selvatici.

Alla prossima!



Thursday, October 19, 2017

Nature

Day 40

For this post, I look at Italian words about nature. It appears that modern man is losing respect for the very planet that sustains us. Here are some useful Italian words to work with.


  • Montagna = mountain
  • Lago = lake
  • Fiume = river
  • Vulcano = volcano
  • Isola = island
  • Foresta = forest
  • Sentiero = path
  • Pianura = plain
  • Scogliera = cliff
  • Ghiacciaio = glacier
  • Cascata = waterfall
  • Mare = sea

Ascolta Questo: La natura ha tante belle cose per noi di godere: montagne, laghi, fiumi, foreste, e molto altro. Ognuno di noi può aiutare a trattare meglio il nostro pianeta.

Alla prossima!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Importance of Sleep

Day 39

Afer dinner today I was catching up on email on my android tablet and came across an interesting podcast. The guest speaker was Matthew Walker, Ph.D. His discussion was about the importance of sleep across our lifetime and the problem with the loss of sleep -- various health problems. Walker also spoke about the inability of the brain to recover the loss of sleep. The podcast was quite intriguing, so, I looked up Walker's book, "Why We Sleep" and bought the ebook. This weekend I'll start reading the book. In the meantime, let's look at some Italian words revolving around sleeping.

  • abbiocco = nodding off
  • sonnellino, riposino and pennichella = to take a nap
  • dorme come un ghiro - sleeps like a rock
  • avere il sonno profundo =  does not wake up easily
  • la sveglia = the alarm clock
  • il letto = the bedroom
  • la coperta = the blanket
  • il cuscino = the pillow
Ascolta Questo: A volte è difficile andare a dormire. Tuttavia, è importante per ottenere abbastanza sonno. Il sonno è importante per la nostra salute. Buona notte.

Alla prossima!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Italian Internet Terms

Day 38

Tonight I thought about looking at the Italian equivalent of Internet terms and stringing together a couple of sentences using a few of those Italian words.

Here are a few Italian Internet words:

  • chiocciola = the @ symbol
  • rubrica = address book
  • file allegati = attached file
  • larghezza di banda = bandwidth
  • audace = bold
  • segnalibro = bookmark
  • Browser = browser
  • pulsante = button
  • selezionare la casella = check the box
  • clic = click
  • carta di credito = credit card
  • dot com = dot com
  • scaricare = download
  • tastiera = keyboard
  • computer portatile = laptop computer
  • mouse = mouse
  • password = password
  • pagina web = web page
  • sito web = web site
Ascolta Questo: Su Internet ci sono molti siti Web che possono aiutare ad imparare una nuova lingua. Ci sono molti video su youtube che sono anche utili.

Alla prossima!

Monday, October 16, 2017

A Few Traveling Words

Day 37

My wife and I have been fortunate in being able to travel to Europe several times. The part that is the least enjoyable happens at the airports. On some occasions, it has been rather smooth at an airport, and at other time not so smooth. But those minor episodes are far overshadowed by the fun of the actual time spent in another country.

Let's take a look at some Italian words worth knowing on a trip.

  • l'aereo (plane)
  • l'aeroporto (airport)
  • i bagagli (luggage) . . . I'm still working on the "gli" sound
  • il biglietto (ticket)
  • il passaporto (passport)
  • la vacanza (vacation)
  • la valigia (suitcase)
  • il viaggio (trip)
  • il volo (flight)
  • il volo diretto (nonstop flight)
  • l'albergo (hotel)
  • la dogana (customs)
  • la prenotazione (reservation)
  • lo scalo (stopover)
Ascolta Questo: Quando è il prossimo volo a Venezia? È il volo diretto? Qual è la porta di partenza? Sei molto gentile, grazie.

Alla prossima!

Sunday, October 15, 2017

HiNative

Day 36

There are many language learning aids on the Internet. The other night I discovered the app HiNative. It's a language learning community, both online and in mobile form. Once you set up your account you can submit questions about a target language and other users who come across your questions can answer. You too can respond to questions about your language.

One of the questions I submitted asked for tips about finding an easy to understand  version of the story about "Pinocchio" in Italian on the Internet. The response suggested I search for "Pinocchio per bambini in italiano." It worked like a charm, and I found multiple cartoon versions. I did not understand all the Italian words, but did understand many -- quite encouraging.

Ascolta Questo: Il sito Web "HiNative.com" è molto interessante e utile. Dopo aver creato il tuo acconto puoi inviare domande sulla lingua che stai imparando.

It is rewarding to get a sense of progress in learning my targetr language, Italian.

Alla prossima!



Saturday, October 14, 2017

Pinocchio

Day 35

As I learn Italian I hope to one day read the story about Pinocchio in Italian. As I read about the author it appears that the story was more than just a children's story. Carlo Collodi, the author of the story of Pinocchio, was actually the pen name of Carlo Lorenzini, who was born and grew up in Florence. The "Collodi" of his pen name was the name of the Tuscan village where Lorenzini's mother was born.

Ascolta Questo: Una delle mie storie d'infanzia preferite è Pinocchio. Come la mia capacità di leggere italiano migliorata spero di un giorno leggere Pinocchio in italiano.

I'm looking forward to seeing the characters in the adventures of Pinocchio come to life in Italian.

Alla prossima!

Friday, October 13, 2017

At the Periodontist


Day 34

Today's visit to a periodontist was definately interesting.

Alscota Questo: La mia visita al mio periondontista era interessante. Grazie a Dio la procedura è andata bene. Tutto bene.

Alla prossima!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

The Doctor

Day 33

If one is ill traveling in Italian it may be necessary to get medial attention. How do we communicate in Italian? Knowing some questions and answers medically-related could be useful. The following could come in handy, and worth building upon.

  • What hurts? - Cosa fa male?
  • My arm hurts. - Mi fa male il braccio.
  • My legs hurt. - Mi fanno male le gambe.
  • My hand hurts. - Mi fa male la mano.
  • My feet hurt. - Mi fanno male i piedi.
  • My back hurts. - Mi fa male la schiena.
Ascolta Questo: Può consigliare un medico? È un bravo dottore? Dov'è l'ufficio del dottore?

Stay well.

Alla prossima!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Directions

Day 32

Understanding words for directions is important for vocabulary building in any language. A group of direction words I'm reviewing and practicing are the following:
  • a destra - to the right
  • a sinistra - to the left
  • all'angolo - on the corner
  • davanti (a) - behind
  • lontano (da) - far (from)
  • tra / fra - between
  • vicino (a) - near (to)
Ascolta Questo: La stazione della metropolitana si trova a destra della stazione degli autobus. La banca è dietro la stazione della metropolitana.

In the next few days I'll practice with additional direction words and phrases.

Alla prossima!


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Columbus

Day 31

This is my 31st straight day of posting a little Italian on this blog.Committed to learning Italian? -- yes.

Yesterday was Columbus Day. My wife and I have traveled to Spain twice, a couple of years apart. We did make a stop at the Cathedral of Seville, where four massive statutes carry the remains of Christopher Columbus. This is according to DNA tests. At the same time, the Dominican Republic claims to have the remains of Columbus, yet does not allow any DNA testing.

Ascolta Questo: C'è un dibattito tra la Spagna e la Repubblica Dominicana su quale dei due paesi hanno i resti del famoso esploratore Cristoforo Colombo. Mia moglie ed io abbiamo visitato la tomba di Colombo a Siviglia, Spagna.

Columbus died over 500 years ago and the site of his remains may continue to be a mystery for years to come.

Alla prossima!

Monday, October 9, 2017

The Great Inventor


Day 30

Toward the end of my workday this afternoon, we had an electric power outage. At that moment I was working on a report on my desktop computer -- so much for that report. Lights out, airconditioning out, computer out. Fortunately, my office faces large windows in the hallway. It does not take long to realize how many modern conveniences we take for granted. I even attended an after-school meeting, in partial darkness.

In 1878 inventor Thomas Edison created a system that could bring electric lighting directly into a customer's business or home. After devising a commercially practical incandescent light bulb in 1879, Edison went on to develop the first large-scale investor-owned electric company in Manhattan.

Ascolta Questo: Il blub elettrico è stato inventato da Thomas Edison, il famoso inventore. Edison aveva oltre 2.000 brevetti per le sue invenzioni in tutto il mondo. Nel 1877 Edison ha inventato il fonografo che ha registrato e riprodurre il suono.

I think even Edison would be amazed at all the gadgets modern technology has developed.

Alla prossima!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Le Meraviglie (The Wonders)

Day 29

What a pleasant surprise! Although not for the first time I came across the suggestion of watching Italian movies to help learn the language This afternoon I found Le Meraviglie (The Wonders) on the Internet. What I didn't know before I sat somewhat mesmerized by the film is that the film was awarded the Grand Prix award at a Cannes film festival. Le Meraviglie (The Wonders) has been described as a "swan song" recounting the disappearance of a traditional, rural lifestyle in Italy, and also the story of an inexperienced country girl looking to break out of her family’s limited views as bee-keepers and honey-makers.

Ascolta Questo: Il film italiano, Le Meraviglie, è una storia di un modo di vivere in Italia che stava scomparendo, e di un'adolescente che cresce in una famiglia di apicoltori.

The descriptive sentence above is easier to read than it is to repeat verbally without reading. Yet stretching the skills should be good for continuous improvement. The song "T'appartengo" performed by Ambra Angiolini led me to search for the English translation of the Italian lyrics . . . that was an interesting discovery as well. Here's the youtube link.

Alla prossima!

Saturday, October 7, 2017

At Breakfast

Day 28

It has been said that the most important meal of the day is breakfast. Let's take a look at some breakfast words and phrases.

Ascolta Questo:

La colazione è il primo pasto della giornata. (Breakfast is the first meal of the day.)

Alcuni cibi tipici per la colazione sono: pancetta, pane, burro, cereali, croissant, uova, latte, pasticceria e toast. (Some typical foods for breakfast are: bacon, bread, butter, cerea, croissant, eggs, milk, and toast.

Ottimo anche per la colazione è frutta e formaggio. (Also good for breakfast is fruit and cheese.)

I'm not a coffee drinker, but my wife is, so let's add coffee to the list. Una tazza di caffè americano per mia moglie, per favore. (A cup of American coffee for my wife, please.)

Alla prossima!


Friday, October 6, 2017

Genealogy


Day 26

It appears that even genealogy has become big business -- just watching commercials on television. Part of learning any new language is learning family relationships in that new language. The Italian words for mother and father are similar to the Spanish equivalents, and those for aunt and uncle sound close to the Spanish words. However, the other relationship words are not similar to either English or Spanish. The Italian words for nephew and grandson are the same, as are those for niece and granddaughter. -- I wonder why? A visual, as in the graphic above can be helpful in learning these new words.

Ascolta Questo:
L'albero Genealogico - Family Tree
il nonno - grandfather
la nonna - grandmother
il padre - father
la madre - mother
il zio - uncle
la zia - aunt
il fratello - brother
la sorella - sister
il nipote - nephew/grandson
la nipote - niece/granddaughter
il cugino - cousin
la cugina - cousin

I'm still wondering about the missing distinction between nephew/niece and grandson/granddaughter.

Alla prossima!





Thursday, October 5, 2017

At a Hotel

Day 26

Traveling in Italy was both interesting and lots of fun. The pace makes all the difference. Having opportunities to practice speaking Italian made it even more enjoyable, even though at the time I knew but a few expressions. I'm glad to say that now I am becoming a much better student of the language. I thought today I'd focus on a few words that would be useful at a hotel if someone knocks at the door.

Ascolta Questo:
Chi è? - Who's there?
Un momento. - Just a moment.
Avanti. - Come in.
Torni più tardi, per favore. - Come back later, please.

It pays to be a good traveler and express appreciation for a hotel's staff. They do provide services, but merit being treated as people and not as servants.

Alla prossima!



Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Italian App on Smartwatch

Day 25

As I indicated at the beginning, my purpose for setting up this blog was to establish a habit of studying and practicing some Italian every day. A couple of days ago I received a new smartwatch, and I set it up to connect with an app that sends an Italian word of the day to my smartwatch. This is a nice feature and another way to stay motivated.

Ascolta Questo: Il mio SmartWatch riceve una parola italiana ogni giorno. Questo è un buon modo per continuare a imparare l'italiano. Questo SmartWatch è veramente intelligente.

I remember as a young boy reading Dick Tracy comics. The radio wristwatch he wore in the comics seemed very futuristic, yet the smartwatch did become a reality.

Alla prossima!

Police Car Lights

My Italian Learning Journal * Year 2 - Day 206 _____________________ ...