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Pistol-rule-adjective-declination

Children learn a language by hearing it at home. The parents talk it (supposedly) correct because is their mother-tongue. They never learn grammar rules.

So do we also, but when we start learning a language later in life we need grammar. It is said when you start learning a language later than 13 you will never be able to speak it like a native speaker… well I think there are also exceptions!  So parallel to learning grammar rules (that are boring) we hear native speakers and we “copy” what they say. Just like children. We hear it that way, we reproduce it that way!

And so it happened that I heard things like this:

Ich esse ein Apfel.

Ich habe ein Hund.

Ich mache ein Fehler.

der Apfel, der Hund, der Fehler = all are masculine nouns.

In all this sentences is used the accusative case.

Then, grammatical correct is:

Ich esse einen Apfel.

Ich habe einen Hund.

Ich mache einen Fehler. 

But when I pronounce it correctly it sounds even strange. So, I asked a german teacher how come the germans speak wrong??!! It came out that many times, the native speakers pronounce it quick and we don’t hear the “en”. They kind of say “einn” swallowing the “e” and pronouncing a kind of double “n”.

Well, this being said, I was happy I clearified this issue for me. Now I know accusative, masculin singular, indefinite article is einen.

ALWAYS!

…also when it sounds like ein.

Und jetzt wünsche ich euch einen schönen Tag!  🙂

 

How I started learning german

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Around 9 years ago (I can’t believe it passed so quick) my mom thought english is not enough anymore. Why? – Because everybody knows it. Not enough for what? – For being competitive on the job market.

Looking back, that didn’t get me a new job, that got me a whole new life! When I started the german courses it was as a hobby. I found it an interesting language and I felt an attraction for it. I never ever did it for a purpose. I never thought will help me somehow. I never expected I will come to live in Germany.

But let me tell you how it all began. In my (I think) 2nd year of university I registered to Schiller Institute in Bucharest for a german course of 1,5 h per week. Schiller was the cheaper and not so pretentious “brother” of Goethe Institute. The first meeting with our teacher was a shock. A woman entered the room talking “chinese”. I could not understand a word, obviously! and I could not imagine why she talks to us if is clearly we can not understand. We were all in level 0. She presented herself. Then followed more german phrases, and more, and more… and our brain was trying to understand what he had no chance to understand. It was a challenge! A language that didn’t resemble anything I have ever heard before.

Approximately 2 years later I saw in Schiller Institute an ad about studying in Germany. I applyed and was accepted for a Master of Engineering in FH Rosenheim. The rest is history.

Rosenheim means “home of the roses”. Is a city 52 km away from Munich and 90 km from Salzburg (in Austria).

(das) Heim = home

(die) Rose, Pl. (die) Rosen = rose

FH (Abkürzung = Abbreviation) = Fachhochschule = University of Applied Sciences

This are some pictures I took those days in University, in the surroundings of Rosenheim.

 

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(Does someone recognize himself in this picture?!)

So the persian proverb that says “A new language is a new life” really applies to me.

Do you also believe that?

 

Partnachklamm

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Wandern.

Have you ever heard this word? If you live in Bavaria (Bayern) almost sure you did.

(das) Wandern = hiking

With the Alps so close there is no wonder germans love it. There is even a research that showed hiking makes you happier, less prone to depresion and obviously healthier.

“Theory is easy but practice kills us” is a romanian saying (Teoria ca teoria dar practica ne omoara). People who know me know I was never a hiker…BUT last Sunday I did it! Yes, I was out there, far away from the city and I said: Yes, nature is amazing!

One and a half hours south of Munich you reach Garmisch-Partenkirchen.

 

Partnachklamm is an amazing canyon in Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Here you have the official website with infos and pictures. But my pictures made with my phone are much better. They make me remember I was there and beauty is even more stunning in reality then in pictures.

So next time when you are around go see it yourself.

P.S.: Important tip: dont’t forget to take a rain jacket. Water drops from everywhere there.

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On the way to the canyon two magnets found their home.

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Surf in München

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My dear readers,

maybe the association of the words “surf” and “München” is a little unexpected.

As a tourist in München you have to see this place. Is called Eisbachwelle and is located at the south entrance of Englisher Garten close to a museum called Haus der Kunst.

 

Let me explain you the name.

(das) Eis = ice

(der) Bach = stream

(die) Welle = wave

As you can notice, a german “word” explains everything. The stream with waves is cold as ice. 🙂

In summer a lot of people gather on the bridge to look at the surfers.

It happened once in February that I was passing by at 8 o´clock in the morning on a working day and there was already a surfer having fun… or suffering in the cold (however you want to put it). For me was cold enough to look at him equipped with winter jacket, scarf and all the heavy clothes I use in winter.

 

 

The German Prepositions

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Some prepositions force the use of a certain case.

The ones shown above are common prepositions used with dative and/or accusative.

In order to remember them easier there are some short forms.

Accusative:

d – durch

o – ohne

g – gegen

f – für

u – um

Dative:

g – gegenüber

a – aus

m – mit

b – bei

a – außer

s – seit

Example of prepositions used with accusative and dative:

Ich bin auf der Straße.                Wo bin ich? –> Dative

Ich gehe auf die Straße.              Wohin gehe ich? –> Accusative

 

Der Käse ist im Kühlschrank.    Wo ist der Käse? –> Dative

Ich stelle der Käse in den Kühlschrank. Wohin stelle ich der Käse? –> Accusative

 

Example of preposition with dative:

Ich spiele mit dem Ball.    –> mit asks ALWAYS for dative!  NO accusative possible.

 

 

n-Deklination

– Hallo! Ich möchte mit Herr Müller sprechen.

WRONG!

But why? What can you do so wrong with this simple phrase?

Ok, take a look at the correct one:

-Hallo! Ich möchte mit Herrn Müller sprechen. 

Yes, I know…only that small “n”…

Yes, the germans will notice that you didn’t say it.

And yes, it is a big mistake.

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You use the n-Deklination only for masculine nouns. Mainly for persons but sometimes also for animals.

You see in the picture above the endings of the masculine nouns for which you have to apply the n-Deklination and some examples of this nouns.

They are frequently used nouns so is important to know the n-Deklination because you will use it often.

How to use the n-Deklination:

In Nominativ the noun doesn’t change.

In all other cases (Akkusativ, Dativ,Genitiv) the noun gets the ending “en“. Exception: Herr –> gets the ending “n” in singular.

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After so much theory I usualy need some examples. And here they are.

Ich habe meinen neuen Nachbarn gestern kennengelernt. 

(Yesterday I met my new neighbour.)

Herr Müller hat zwei Kinder, einen Jungen und ein Mädchen. 

(Mr. Müller has two children, a boy and a girl.)

Die Kinder sprechen oft mit dem Franzosen

(The children talk often to the frenchman)

Einmal wollte ich einen Polizisten nach dem Weg fragen.

(Once I wanted to ask a policeman the way.)

Bald lernt er im Deutschkurs andere Ausländer kennen: einen Polen, einen Italiener, einen Grichen, einen Amerikaner und einen Schweden

(Soon he meets other foreigners in the german course: a polish, an italian, a greek, an american and a sweedish. )

♥ Romantic Road ♥

If you want to be romantic in Germany you have to rent a car, maybe one like this

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and travel aprox. 300 km starting in Würzburg and ending in Füssen. Obviously passing through Tauberbischofsheim, Lauda, Bad Mergentheim, Creglingen, Rothenburh ob der Tauber, Dinkelsbühl, Nördlingen, Harburg, Donauwörth, Augsburg, Landsberg, Schongau, Pfaffenwinkel und Schwangau. This is the Romantic Road. Here I talked to you about the Neuschwanstein castle. It is also part of the romantic road, actually its endpoint.

From all this cities I have visited only Würzburg, Augsburg and Schwangau. But there are two more cities that I want to talk to you about and that are not included in this list. One is Veitshöchheim (only 6km from Würzburg) and the other one Bamberg (90 km from Würzburg). They are also romantic gems that deserve to be discovered. In Veitshöchheim there are some delicious Rokoko gardens in which we went for a walk last Saturday (Wir haben einen Spaziergang durch den Garten gemacht.)

der Spaziergang, Pl. die Spaziergänge = walk / promenade

der Garten, die Gärten = garden

(wir) haben gemacht is the Perfect tense (Perfekt) of the verb “to make”. The Perfekt is used very often in german – almost for everything that happened in the past.

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And this was the 10 km Stau on the way.

der Stau = congestion / traffic jam

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Here is Bamberg:

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What do you think?

…romantic, right?

…except of the Stau.

 

German Adjectives

 

I am proud to present you my new video on Youtube and to start a new chapter of this blog: Grammatik pur!

My purpose is to share with you parts of the german lessons that I had here in Germany and that are extremely preciuous. Over time I got all kind of explanations for all kind of grammar rules. Some were good, some not so good. Slowly I found the ones which best worked for me. And now I’m sharing them with you!

This is the table that I like the most for learning the adjective declination.

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die Pistole = gun  (I refer here to the “Pistolen-Regel” which helps you remember the weak ending for the adjectives). As you can notice in the picture, because I was writing very quick, I wrote wrong  “pistole”. It should be written with capital letter (german nouns are witten always with capital letter).

Here you have also a diagram that exaplains the main rule how to understand and remember the table in a logical manner.

adjektiv-deklination-schema

And what about analyzing together some phrases that catch my attention every once a while? Grammatik pur is in the air.

Stay tuned!

 

 

1 Mai = Maibaum

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maibaum

When you think of waking up on Sunday, what do you dream of? Waking up late? with the smell of fresh coffee? or maybe breakfast (= das Frühstück) in bed? or just relax and linger in bed until you get bored?

… but what about being woken up at 8 by the police ringing at your door?

This was our (hope) once in a lifetime, unique experience on Sunday 1 Mai, one week ago. First thought (= der erste Gedanke) that passed through my brain: who rings at this hour??? …Answer: the Police! Second thought that passed through my brain: what in the world could we have done so wrong? Answer: we parked exactly in front of the place where the Maibaum will be placed. What is Maibaum?!?? Answer: a tree (= der Baum).

(der) Mai = May (the month)

(der) Maibaum = the Maypole

Am vorletzten Sonntag wurde der Maibaum aufgestellt. 

The second last Sunday, the Maypole was erected.

In Germany and Austria the maypole (or Maibaum) is a tradition going back to the 16th century. It is a decorated tree usually painted in the Bavarian colours of white and blue and decorated with emblems depicting local crafts and industry.

source: Wikipedia

The folk festival of Maibaum is my favourite. I remember first time I attended such a celebration I didn’t have any ideea about what should be going on. I came in a small village (das Dorf) in Bavaria and I saw some people pushing up slowly a tree, traditional bavarian music was played by a band dressed in traditional bavarian clothing (Dirndl & Lederhosen) and people were sitting in the middle of the closed, main road of the village drinking beer (das Bier) and eating home-made (hausgemacht) cakes (der Kuchen (sg.), die Kuchen (pl.)) .

So, in the picture you see the Maibaum that costed us a fine of 15 Eur + 2h of sleep.

Neuschwanstein Castle

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Welcome to the castle that inspired Disney!

In english its name would translate to New Swanstone Castle.

neu = new

(der) Schwan = swan (don’t confuse it with (das) Schwein = pig; especially when pronouncing people have the tendency to make this mistake)

(der) Stein = stone

(das) Schloss = castle (but also lock)

This castle was built under the reign of king Ludwig II of Bavaria and was never finished due to his mysterious death in 1886.

Do you know anything about him? Let me tell you some details that I find very interesting. King Ludwig II was also called the “Märchenkönig” (Fairy Tale King) because he preferred to escape the political life and live in an ideal poetic world. He was the biggest admirer of Richard Wagner that’s why many paintings of the castle feature scenes of the composer’s work. For example, the king’s bedroom is painted with themes from Tristan & Isolde. He was investing a lot of money to build the castle in a time when the society thought that money are needed for solving more important state affairs. This was finally used as a reason to declare him insane and dethrone him. On 12 June 1886 he was transported to Berg Castle on the shores of lake Starnberg, south of Munich. One day later he was found dead in the lake. He left behind some architectural treasures that represent today the most important tourist attractions of Germany. See Schloss Linderhof, Schloss Herrenchiemsee and the Munich Residenz.

Last weekend we made a one-day trip to the castle from Munich and I will first let he pictures speak for themselves.

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Travelling by car takes aprox. 2 hours and you get such a great view with the Bavarian Alps and the countryside.

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The castle is located in the area of Hohenschwangau close to the city of Füssen and very close to the border with Austria.

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Here you have the map of the area around the castle.

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That’s me holding the german and the bavarian flags on the way up to the castle. Prepare yourself for walking aprox. 40 min. up the hill to reach the castle.

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When you arrive up you are rewarded with such a panorama.

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I recommend you to walk 15 more minutes to see the castle from Marienbrücke (die Brücke = bridge). We had bad luck and the bridge was closed until summer for maintenance but there was another spot from where you could see well the castle.

And last but not least, if you want to eat nice pasta & pizza we recommend you from the bottom of our hearts the restaurant Il Pescatore in Füssen. The meal was delicious, the atmosphere relaxed, the wine very good and the staff very friendly.

Kisses and Hugs,

Cata & Javi

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