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Thankfully though, Iran is a far cry from other countries I've visited in that there are fewer folk for me to be lazy with and I am forced to adopt the new tongue rapidly. My time in Iran has not been totally void of English speaking due to a large amount of my immediate family here comfortably speaking English, yet, the difference has been larger than anything previously experienced. I am however enjoying the frequent moments where I'm being thrown in at the deep end and have been happy to indulge taxi drivers with the smallest of small talk with my limited football banter.
I feel I am currently at a stage of knowing practical Farsi - I can transport myself, get food, make loose arrangements and say which football team I support. With the Farsi script being unfamilar to me (of which I'm very slowly learning) I have a more difficult task from my European language tuition back in the skool dayz where the learning was made easier by the relatively similar alphabet and corresponding sounds to that of English. With that being said I have a lot that is hidden from me until I grasp the new alphabet and structure where I hope I can increase my pace of learning through self tuition.
This new language - in its spoken form - is very familiar to me though. The sounds and accompanying gestures are like mathematical equations - I know the numbers but am yet to learn new symbols for me to understand the results. Or similarly, if you are to hear a sequence of numbers (a person talking to you) and are to repeat back to yourself the sequence (working out the translation), you might only recall a small volume of what was initially said. My time in Iran is like a mathematician's convention therefore and although I wasn't half bad at maths, schools was a long time ago and it's tough to get back into the learning mindset.