Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Mountains and valleys entry. no. 4

 In June I am taking a Thai test which is designed for Japanese speakers. I really like taking tests (!) and I live in Japan so this kind of Thai language ability test is all that is available for me here. Actually the Japanese people love tests and certifications too and this test is one of the benchmark certifications to have if you want to get a job with a car manufacturer like Toyota, and then get transferred to Thailand, which is what I want to do. Of course there are a number of books that teach to all of these tests and the Thai language proficiency test for Japanese speakers is no exception. There are 5 levels with level 5 being the lowest and level 1 being the highest. Guess which one I am taking? That's right, level 5. (I already have level 2 of the Japanese language proficiency test, but have failed level 1 three times :(.

So because of these preparatory books I have a pretty good idea of what's going to be in the test. A number of questions will be about time, focusing on numbers, days of the week, months and the like. Which brings us at long last to the topic of this entry which is, learning the months.

I had put off learning the months for a while because they looked complicated plus they all had a suffix that you had to remember as well. However it is surprisingly easy, AND the suffixes actually make it easier.
There are three suffixes;คม, (khom), พันธ (phan), ยน (yon)
คม is added to the end of months that have 31 days.
พันธ used for February.
ยน is added to the end of months that have 30 days.

For those people that have difficulty remembering which months have 30 days and which have 31, try this neat trick:
Make two fists with your hands and put them together with your knuckles facing up.
Start from the far left knuckle, with each knuckle and valley between representing a month. The knuckles represent months with 31 days and the valleys between each knuckle represent 30 day months plus February. It even works for July and August which both have 31 days because you jump from the last knuckle on your left hand to the first knuckle on you right hand. Try it, I guarantee it works!!

If, when you are reciting the months you forget whether it is คม or ยน, just refer to your knuckles.


MikeNZ66 said...

Hmm, doesn't the whole world know "30 days hath September, April, June, and November"? :)

The Epicurean said...

Well, my mum knows that, but I could never remember that little ditty when I was a kid, so I learned the knuckle trick and stayed with it ever since.