Wednesday, July 29, 2009

National Thai Language Day---July 29


King Ramkhamhaeng,the third king of the Sukhothai period

Well after reading the post by Talen entitled I learned to speak Thai fluently and you can too, and reading the story in the Phuket Gazette, concerning today being NATIONAL THAI LANGUAGE DAY. I thought it would be a good thing to give my take on learning to speak the Thai language fluently,as for me it will never happen ,I have been able to master the colors and my body parts (most) and enough words to not starve to death when it's my time to do the shopping at the market, (think god for thoses little plastic bags sitting on all those tables on the sides of the road and at the market ) I walk up to them and point and act like I know whats inside, and to be on the safe side and make sure I have something to eat I always buy a hot dog on a stick, and I get a big smile and thank you , again ,think god for sign language. My hat goes off to those that are able to master a full converstation with a Thai national,and Me ,I am glad that one of the first Thai words that Ciejay taught me was" Sawadee Kop" what a life saver that few words have been time and time again.
I really enjoyed the story in the Gazette and thought I would share a little of it with you ,I learned a couple of things I didn't know and you might too .
Today ,July 29, is marked by Thais as National Thai Language Day,and was celebrated in Phuket earlier this week , the event was attended by students ,historians, and scholars. The celebration,included,a writing contest,Thai folk singing.traditional dancing and lots of speeches about the importance of preserving the nation's written language.
National Thai Language Day is in remembrance of a debate on the preservation of the nation's language between His Majesty King Bhumipol Adulyadej and professors at Chulalongkorn University's Faculty of Arts on July 29,1962.
In 1999, the Thai government officially made July 29 a day of national importance to mark the King's 1962 speech and his commitment to preserving the Thai language.
The Thai alphabet was originally conceived by King Ramkhamhaeng, the third king of the Sukhothai period,726 years ago.
According to Thai educator Ajarn Jarin Ngunjun,Thai is one of only 100 languages with an official alphabet.
Story written by Thanasorn Chookate in the Phuket Gazette in Phuket ,Thailand July 29, 2009
Hope you enjoyed the story and Our Thailand King's commentment and the determination of the Thai people to perserve the Thai language and alphabet is a real blessing to me . I am part Cherokee Indian, and our language in America has been all but lost , when the white man took all the children from the villages long ago, to teach them the white man's ways, in their white mans schools, on the reservations , the Indians children were forbidden to speak their own lanuage and today many Cherokee Indians can not speak their native tongue, my family included, My great grand-mother was a full bloodied Cherokee Indian ( the real americans), I would be proud if me or my kids and gran-kids could speak our native tongue,BUT they did not make it a National Cherokee Language Day. "Thank you" to the King and Thai Government for knowing how important it is to preserve their language and placing such great importance as to celebrate it and make it a National Thai Language Day. Malcolm

7 comments:

MJ Klein said...

Malcolm, thanks for that very interesting account of the Thai language. i did not know that the alphabet was conceived by a Thai ruler much like the Korean alphabet was. in converstations i've had with my Thai friends who are educators, they say that Thai must have it's roots in Chinese and in many cases Thai and Chinese are word-for-word interchangble, although completely different.

also i did not know that you were part Native American. what an interesting life you've led Malcolm! thanks for sharing.

Mike said...

Malcolm sadly 29/7 was not a good Thai language day for me as you would have witnessed if you had seen me trying to communicate with the guys who were fitting my new gate.

MTF was elsewhere and it transpires all they were trying to tell me is that the paint was still wet and not to close the gate.

Mind you we did have an interesting conversation on Liverpool FC!

Martyn said...

Likewise with the Talen post I thought the man must be a genius to have learned the language so quick. Your Cherokee roots are interesting as last night I was reading about that great Cheyenne warrior Sitting Bull and it's sad that nowadays so many of the people descended from the red indian tribes are not able to speak there native tongue.

As far as the Thai language goes then I'm very much like you in that if someone tied my hands behind my back then my Thai word count would diminish quite considerably. Wah doe oh gee nah lee.(Cherokee)

Malcolm and CieJay Burgess said...

MJ , thanks for stopping by ,I learned a little more about the Thai language from the story too, and yes I am proud of my Native American hertiage and what little Cherokee blood I do have , sad to say, not quite enough to qualify for any land or for any of that Casino money being given out .

Mike sorry about your bad Thai language day ,I have them often and have learned to laugh it off and try to learn a little more sign language and words ,if possible. I hope you are keeping a good journal of your life and adventures in the LOS, to share with folks one of these days .

Martyn, Yes what a warrior Sitting Bull was , many books and a few movies about his life, and I guess because of the Cherokee blood that flows thru these old veins ,I have always loved reading anything I could about the Indians of the ole West. When we use to play Cowboys and Indians as kids ,I always wanted to be the Indian so I could shoot the bow and arrow and paint my face all up and run around making woup ee wouo ee, sounds and riding my stick horse around the circled wagons. ha ha . can't translate that saying you left but , tsi-tsa-la-gi (I am a cherokee) and my great-great grandmother walked the trail and they called it nu-na-hi-du-natlo-hi-lu-i or THE TRAIL WHERE THEY CRIED . And it's strange that sometimes, I cry when I read the story , its almost like I am walking and crying with them too, Its like I can hear their Spirits crying still for the injustice and betrayal they suffered and still suffer today . Malcolm

Everyone , thanks for stopping by and reading my posts of varied subjects, and the most rewarding part of writting them is to go back and read the comments . keep them coming , they make it fun. Malcolm

Talen said...

Malcolm, Like you I don't know if fluency will ever happen for me but I think we all get points for trying. There is nothing like being at a road side stall and getting a word or two right to the glee of the Thai's around.

I noticed something on my last trip though that made me wonder a little. Just Like you I am good at pointing and hoping but while I was in Bangkok I noticed a Thai doing the same as me...she was deaf and mute so she was at the same disadvantage as I was but still managed like I did to get some food and a smile.

I think as long as we're trying it all works out.

Camille said...

Hi Malcolm,

When living in a country, I think it's essential to learn the local language, but it proofs to be hard! After almost 10 years I'm not nearly fluent. It also becomes harder the older you get, those memory cells just don't work that well anymore compared to when we were 20 orso.

Be proud of your Cherokee heritage, it's unofrtunate that this language is fading.

Bury my haert at Wounded Knee is one of the best but also saddest books I've read on native American history.

Thai Language School said...

Thailand is a beautiful place to be. It is really relaxing there. After I have learned the Thai language, I would also like to go and have a vacation there.