Thursday, September 11, 2008

The language barrier

The language barrier…

On my bus ride to school today, I was totally awe by two foreign ladies… It was an elderly women about my mum’s age or older and a younger women I estimated her age would be on her late twenties. What made me awe about their presence is the older women look so demure and elegant reading a book, and this younger one so beautiful even without make up. My first assumption that both of these ladies are Tagalong, but as I listen intently to their language they were speaking Spanish.

And that moment I am completely awed by them… I don’t know I found their language are so exotic it made me wonder wtf they speaking, I love how they pronounced each word, hearing each sentence… I am so Sakaikima… It’s not the first time I’m awed by foreign language, it’s just this is my first time hearing so clearly Spanish spoken in front of me.

Then it occurs to me, I am awed by foreign language but I myself could only understand half of mine and could barely read it. And I’m so shamelessly idolize foreign language but to those foreigners probably felt the same hearing our language. Btw I am a DUSUN, half Tambunan and half Kota Belud. My parents speaks perfect dusun, my granny speaks dusun, almost all my relatives speaks and understand dusun then why do I still feel so strange speaking my native language when everybody around me speaking it with an ease. I am so ashamed… I should be learning dusun first before I venture into other language.

I should be proud to be Sabahan… I am born bilingual unfortunately I didn’t realize it until it is almost too late. I should speak fluent dusun, malay and English. Knowing others language should be a bonus to me… so wtf am I doing?... why do I speak broken English, broken malay and few dusun. This is not a blaming game though my opinion is society plays a big role to this issue. Even my parents speak perfect dusun, they speak malay to their child, and our society is more westernize everyday. As part of the younger generation I knew only a few local Sabah artists. I know more about western culture than my own.

So I promise myself today that I would learn about my language, learn more about my culture and help to preserve dusun culture so that it will not be forgotten by our children.

P/s: my laptop is currently having problem accessing the internet… will update daily after it’s fixed….

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