All posts by Leila Huuki

2nd Meeting – Rehearsing Russian

Hello for not so long time ago!

One day in February was time for our second meeting. We had planned that in every other time Nadiia would teach me Russian and every other time I would teach her Finnish. We decided to start with Russian.

When Nadiia started to speak Russian for me for the first time, I think my face was something like this:


I hadn’t realized how much of the Russian language had slipped from my mind. Though, as I said before, I can’t make any sense when Russian-speaking people are speaking Russian. I mean I can understand Spanish people and they talk really fast but Russian has so many different pronunciatons and everything just sounds the same.

Finally, when she started writing words on the computer I was like “ooo, now I get it”. Surprisingly I still remembered most of the cyrillic alphabet, so there was at least something positive. We rehearsed the hellos and howareyous (Здравствуйте, как дела?) and the numbers from 1 to 10:

ноль, один, два, три, четыре, пять, шесть, семь, восемь, девять and десять.

Nadiia also taught me some new words, like the colours. For your entertainment (and for my rehearsal), here are some of the basic ones:

голубой красный зеленый желтый черный белый (white) серый оранжевый

Somehow we also started talking about drinks (maybe because Nadiia was drinking tea and I was drinking Pepsi). I don’t really care for hot drinks like coffee or tea so she taught me to say: я предпочитю холодные напитки = I prefer cold drinks.

Then I noted and we started wondering that Finnish language doesn’t have a word like prefer. You have to say it in a longer way, freely translated: “I like better/more”. I as a Finnish native started also thinking that it is odd.

All in all this meeting was a good one. I started getting the touch to Russian language again and we also got to know each other better. Although, afterwards I was really exhausted for all of the new information. I mean, usually I’m really good at learning new languages. For example I learned Swedish and Spanish quite easily but Russian is giving me a bit of a headache even just with the basics. Well, let’s see what this is going to be! 😀

1st meeting – Getting to know each other

I have always been bad at keeping a diary (or a blog) because I’m not used to sit down in the evening and write about my day. So this is going to be a one-day pop-up blog about my twelve meetings during the spring  with Nadiia, an Ukranian girl who taught me Russian and who I taught Finnish. Thankfully we wrote down the topics of our meetings so via them I can recall what we did and what I thought about it.

Nadiia and I met for the first time in January. It was exciting to meet her because before we had just sent each other email and whatsapp-messages. I learned that she was from Ukrania, studying in Poland and had come to TAMK as an exchange student to study tourism. She was visiting Finland for the first time. In this meeting we planned when we would meet and what we would teach each other.

I had taken one course of Russian basics but it had been more than a year ago so a lot of it had gone from  my mind. I basically knew most of the cyrillic alphabet and remembered some words and basic phrases. (Though I got to say that I barely understood anything when Russian people spoke.) We planned that Nadiia would rehearse the basics with me and then she would teach me new words.

Nadiia knew nothing at all about Finnish language so I was going to start from the beginning with hellos etc. However, I thought she had the privilege to be in Finland and hear the natives speak the language every day.

At the end of the meeting we visited the school library together to get some study books for Russian and Finnish. We planned the next meeting and then went on different paths. I thought that this was going to be an interesting spring and I felt motivated and full of energy!