I was lucky enough to receive as a (very generous) prize in the Online Eisteddfod a subscription to Golwg (magazine published weekly by the publishers of Lingo Newydd). I had an email from the publishers to tell me about the prize, in which they said words to the effect that if I were to write in to Lingo it would be very welcome, which I took as a politely indirect request to do so (“os dych chi eisiau ysgrifennu llythyr at lingo rhyw dro yn dweud eich hanes neu eich diddordebau, mae pob croeso i chi wneud hynny”).
I checked with them for length, and they said 100-200 words, so after agonising unreasonably long over what to say, I have finally written a short something. Obviously, they’ll edit it for publication anyway, but it probably helps if it’s halfway decent when they receive it, so I’m asking here first for (a) any horrible mistakes and (b) a couple of thoughts on content.
Annwyl lingo newyddWhich, in theory, and allowing for me doing some of my thinking in Welsh and some in English, should mean something like:
Sais dw i, ac yn byw yn Rhydychen; dw i'n athro Saesneg a mathemateg i oedolion, ond mae gen i ddiddordeb mewn ieithoedd. Ers mis Mawrth dw i'n dysgu Cymraeg ar-lein efo'r wefan SaySomethinginWelsh.com, a dw i byth wedi dysgu cymaint mor gyflym – a Chymraeg ddim yn iaith mor hawdd i ddysgu!
Er bod y ddinas yn Lloegr, mae ganddi hi ychydig o cysylltiadau efo Cymru, o Goleg yr Iesu ('Y Coleg Cymreig' ym Mhrifysgol Rhydychen) i Gôr Meibion Rhydychen (a oedd yn gyntaf côr Cymry oedd wedi dod yma i weithio yn y ffatri ceir). Mae 'na grwp bach o ddysgwyr Cymraeg sy'n cyfarfod ar y lleiaf unwaith pob wythnos.
Mae gen i ddau blant, ac mae'r 'fengaf yn enwedigol yn gwneud beth mae o'n medru i hybu'r Gymraeg: pan clywodd o rhywun mewn parc yn siarad iaith doedd dim yn Saesneg, wnaeth o redeg i ddweud wrtha fo, “Dw i'n hoffi coffi!” (Oedd y dyn yn Ffrangeg.)
Dw i ddim wedi cael cyfle i ddod i Gymru ers dechrau dysgu, ond dan ni'n gobeithio dod blwyddyn nesaf: mae fy mab yn hoff iawn o drenau, a byddai fo wrth ei fodd ymchwilio'r Rheilffordd Ffestiniog.
Cofion cynnes, etc.
I'm English and live in Oxford; I teach English and Maths to adults, but I am interested in languages. Since March I have been learning Welsh online with the website SaySomethinginWelsh.com, and I have never learnt so much so fast -- despite Welsh being not a very easy language to learn!Language-wise, apart from pointing out any horrible clangers (please, please do),I would just say that I hesitated over the start -- "Sais dw i, sy'n byw..." or "Sais dw i, yn byw..." were also considered. I don't know what sounds best.
Although the city is in England, it has a number of links to Wales, from Jesus College (the 'Welsh College' in Oxford University) to the Oxford Male Voice Choir (which was originally a choir of Welshmen who had come here to work in the car factory). There is a small group of Welsh learners who meet at least once a week.
I have two children, the youngest of whom does all he can to promote Welsh: when he heard someone in a park speaking a language that wasn't English, he ran up to him to say "Dw i'n hoffi coffi!" (The man was French.)
I haven't had the opportunity to visit Wales since starting to learn, but we are hoping to go next year: my son loves trains, and would be delighted to visit the Ffestiniog Railway.
Content-wise, what I’ve written is about 200 words, so if anything was added something would have to be taken out, but we could probably lose the slightly twee bit about the boy loving railways and the random mention of Ffestiniog at the end. I did think about putting in something like (O ddifri – ym mis Ionawr do’n i ddim yn gwybod hyd yn oed sut i ddweud “Dw i ddim yn siarad Cymraeg.”) where I was talking about SSiW, but I’m not sure; I did wonder if I should put in some explicit mention of winning the subscription, but it felt like blowing my own trumpet a bit much (I did make sure that I took a photo for them with me sat with the latest copy of it); I did wonder if I should try to push SSiW more explicitly (I thought of putting in something about os oes gynnoch chi ffrindiau neu deulu di-Gymraeg sydd eisiau dysgu), but there’s the word-count, and anyway I’ve made sure there’s an SSiW mug in the picture, unless they crop it out.
Oh, and I changed ‘mynd i Gymru’ to ‘dod i Gymru’ at the last minute, because even though I’m not in Wales, the publishers and many of their readers are. I still don’t know which sounds right.
Corrections and suggestions gratefully received!