In 2018, I started to dance hula and ori tahiti. This was the moment, when I have got a new interest in Polynesian culture. At the same moment, as a polyglot, I was thinking about learning one Polynesian language. My first choice fall on Samoan because it was the language of the first song, which I danced to. At that moment, I preferred to start any language learning with Memrise, so I find Samoan there, but besides that, I have found Tahitian, Māori, Fijian, Hawaian. It turned out that there are really similar to each other (as the languages of the same language group). This was the tough moment, I could not decide, which to pick. The problem of choice postponed the beginning of my learning for a long time.
The only thing that I was doing – singing along with the songs, I danced to and roughly translated them (it was also the part of dancing, as hula is about telling a story). Anyway, Samoan again appeared on my list after I decided to sing a song from Moana on the Multilingual Karaoke during a Polyglot Gathering in Bratislava.
After some time, I have registered on Tandem application. I was looking there for people with all the Polynesian languages. Even though, I found one person with Samoan, he or she (I don’t remember now) did not responded. Nevertheless, I had a nice chat with the person, who spoke Māori. So, I have decided that Māori will be the Polynesian language that I choose. Again, something went wrong and I did not start learning. I don’t even remember, what was the reason back then. Last year (2019) was a year of indigenous languages and during the Language Jam challenge, I have got Māori! I don’t know what stopped me this time.
Anyway, this year, after the Polyglot Gathering, I was inspired to learn an indigenous language. I was thinking about Ruthenia at first because it is spoken in Ukraine, but it turned out to be very similar to Ukrainian and Slovak, so I know, it would be difficult to learn it. Despite that, I checked the list of indigenous languages, I have found Māori. That was it. I have thought that this is the last chance and I must start learning. Now or never 😀
It is not that easy to find sources to learn Māori, but I managed, additionally my fellow Polyglot has recommended me a great book. So, I have finally started. Now, I am going to post some interesting and unusual things that I find in this languages, which you might also like 🙂