My first major language breakthrough
Two nights ago I made a huge breakthrough in Dutch. When someone hears a language that they don't speak, they'll often think that the person speaking is doing so too quickly. More often than not, the listener's ears are simply not attuned to discerning the sounds in that particular language. For me, this is no longer the case with Dutch, as my listening comprehension is catching up to my reading: I can now understand the individual words someone is speaking in Dutch instead of just hearing a jumble of sounds. This is a huge step in the right direction, and it came nearly all at once. I was studying my Lonely Planet Dutch phrasebook outside of my calculus class two days ago and found that, when I had come home and started listening to Dutch music, I could pick out individual words. I may not be able to spell them or even know what they mean, but I can't complain!
I also noticed yesterday that this comprehension increase extends to Japanese as well for whatever reason, though not nearly to the same degree. I think the theory behind that is simply that I've been focusing on language a lot lately, and getting my uni mindset back has perhaps worked in my favor in this regard. I'll surely find out the true culprit with the next language! ;)