Friday, August 22, 2014

Language and Translating

This has been an interesting summer, mostly because of translating between English / Hungarian.
For native English speakers, the Hungarian language is said to be one of the most difficult in the world. My own experience was that after three years of language study with two lessons per week, I still could not put a sentence together! Then in the fourth year I attended a special class in the local university: 19 hours of lessons per week for an entire school year. The fifth year of studies continued with two lessons per week from the Gospel of John.
When I speak Hungarian, the foreigners think that I am Hungarian. However, the Hungarians immediately hear the accent and the numerous mistakes. They cannot be fooled! If someone says to a Hungarian that I speak the language perfectly, the sly smile gives away the fact that the statement is not true! However....
I made eight trips to a hospital in Budapest to translate for our Pakistani friend, Elisha, to receive instructions on the peritoneal dialysis method.
I traveled to the USA as a participant / translator at the International Church of God General Assembly in Orlando, FL. In addition to visiting friends in Virginia, we were also in Mississippi ministering in three churches, visiting Daniel who begins his senior year at the University of Southern Mississippi as well as spending time with my mother and family.
I was a connection on three different occasions for someone that lives in the states but is of Hungarian decent:
  • A couple from California came to Hungary for their very first time. The lady was of Hungarian decent and found some of her relatives on Facebook. I was the driver and the translator for one of the most significant events in their lives.
  • One emotional moment was when Alex Zsolt gave his very first concert in Hungary. (Being one of the local organizers for this orchestra was one of the most memorable events that my family and I have ever assisted with. Click on this link to watch one of the performances: The Celebration Orchestra).
  • A man from North Carolina that is second generation American but 100% Hungarian decent was in Hungary again and met a relative that he had never personally met before. I got to be a part of this special moment.