Welsh Days took place in Szczecin in November 2o16.
Tatiana Chernyshova who joined ERIU Leipzigs Trip shares her thoughts:
„To take part in Welsh Days was a very spontaneous decision for me!“
To take part in Welsh days was a very spontaneous decision for me. I`ve met ERIU Leipzig at Samhain (Irish Halloween) party and found out, that there is a Welsh learning group. I am fond of culture and language of all the Nations of British Isles, and I was excited to get the invitation to go to Poland for Welsh Days. I`ve made a right decision – firstly, Szczecin is a very beautiful city. Though the nature has its irony – we spend three days there and the weather was bad all the time except the conference day…
Nevertheless, we had a very warm welcome and the rain didn`t bother us at all. Polish students Paweł, Daniel and Marta showed us the historical center and told us about a lot about their city. I should thank our teams from both sides – Leipzig and Szczecin.
The trip was very well organized and we are grateful to those, who have enough enthusiasm to put such events into practice.
Secondly, we met many characterful people who are very passionate about minority
languages. They inspired me to learn Welsh and I hope to meet them again. Everyone was
very friendly and responsive. We could listen not only to people who are very interested in the subject, but also native speakers. I found out a lot if useful facts about the language and it was a good start for learning Welsh. Dr. hab. hab. Sabine Asmus gave an fascinated talk about the role of colours in old Celtic languages.
Welsh journalist Meic Birtwistle and Welsh campaigner of Jeremy Corbyn in Wales talked about the modern political situation in Wales. We analyzed the Welsh poem with dr Aled Llion Jones from the Welsh Department of the University of Bangor. We talked about an old classical Welsh meter poetry and even tried to write our own poetry in this style. It was difficult for me, because „cynghanedd“ ( in Welsh: harmony) is not about a vowel rhyme, but about the sound-arrangement of consonants, also stress and alliteration play a huge role.
Of course it wasn`t always about the study, as every student we wanted to have fun. We visited pubs, took part at the quiz about Wales, talked about movies, music and hobbies. The language is quite a challengeable to learn. It`s unusual, weird and isn`t similar to any
«popular» one. But that`s what make it interesting and worth learning – to keep the language alive. There are so many songs, poetry, and heritage, which we can found out from learning.
After the Szczecin trip i joined to Welsh learners group, organized through ERIU Leipzig.
This week we are going to have exam, it means I can already talk to you about daily routine like weather, food, your names or hobbies.
Da iawn! We are again on our way to Szczecin for the Irish Days in March 21-24! I am looking forward to see old friends, and to meet new ones and to learn more about Ireland.
You don`t have to be an expert in the language to love it. ☺
Tatiana Chernyshova © ERIU Leipzig 2o17