One of the wonderful things about the advent of the Internet has been the ability to check L2 constructions quickly and easily. If one is unsure about a phrase, such as “Si c’est le cas, c’est quoi que tu veux?”, one can Google each of the constituent parts to check the accuracy.
As far as my French mission is concerned, I started it about 6 months ago – although very half-heartedly (no immersion, less than 10 minutes per day on average) – and started on it full time at about the start of January.
And I’m pleased to report that, having used both Google and humans to check some of the sentences i’ve been automatically outputting (chatting with some French people ;)), my French is already surprisingly accurate. I can think in slightly broken French now, too.
I’m still not totally sure about certain verb conjugations (especially the subjunctive), and noun genders are still uncertain territory, but in general my French is certainly good enough for intermediate communication purposes already.
So that’s the fruit of 6 weeks reasonably intensive work on French, in Hong Kong. I can now see how Benny t’Irish Polyglot’s been managing to work apparent miracles with European languages (because of the mass of vocabulary shared with English).
RE Cantonese… I have a new partner who I’ve been practicing a lot with in exchange for a small amount of English. Conversation is so much better than watching TV, although the latter is still good for filling up dead time.