“Alles Gute, Ryz?” When I heard Zyrch say this, I laughed. I was surprised because I didn’t teach him that phrase. It means “Everything alright?” when he saw Ryz stumbled in our living room. It’s really true that kids can adapt a new language more easily than adults. That’s because it’s what they hear in school. Learning a new language could give you a feeling that you’re a baby again. Identifying every sound of every letter in every object you see. This was what I felt when I was enrolled in a German course before I came here. It was in 2007 when having a basic knowledge of the German language was required to applicants for immigrants here. A certificate for passing Start Deutsch 1 exam should be presented upon applying for visa. And it doesn’t stop there. We have to take an Integration Course here and have to reach a certain level in language proficiency and pass the examination to be able to work. English and German alphabet basically sound almost the same, except for a few letters. C is pronounced as “tse”, J as in Y in English, V as “fau” and W as “ve”. That’s why Volkswagen as pronounced here as “Folksvagen” and BMW is called Be-Em-Ve. And that’s only for the phonetics and not yet for their sound when they are joined by other letters. Did you know that every noun in the German language has a gender? Yup, you read it right. A noun here is either Feminine, Masculine or Neutral. An article before the noun indicates its gender. “Die” (pronounced as Dee) for feminine, “Der” for masculine and “Das” for neutral. That is for their nominative case. I wonder how were the nouns identified…? Who said the “wall” should be feminine, a “table” masculine and a “book” neutral? I haven’t mastered the language (and how could I? We talk to our kids in English and hubby and I talk in Filipino) and I think it will take a lifetime for me to memorize their rules. Uh.. or maybe not, with constant exposure and of course application of the language it will take me just half a lifetime!