“Schön tag noch fur sie” the lady at the bake shop said as I paid for my croissant. I have put quite a lot of time into learning more German since finding out that I had received the grant. Deutsche im Auto studerien - learning in my car while making endless traverses across the Los Angeles basin. I don’t know enough yet to be able to converse, but I can get by, and more and more bits jump out at me.
So - “A beautiful day yet/still for you,” the lady said. Oh! “Have a nice day.” German is very structured, very precise. If you see a word written you will know exactly how to pronounce it in standard German, and you pronounce every letter (if you count diphthongs as a single letter). Not like French were the pronunciation is also quite specific but you ignore about half the letters written (but according to rules). And English? Enough drought thought through though. The “f” in “if” versus “of”, but then add another “f” for “off”. And my current favorite to say out loud: Going - Doing - Boing!
German is also very specific in sentence structure, which is quite difficult to learn, especially because English cuts all those corners so nicely. “Have a nice day.” Can’t say that in German (or in French I think, must ask). You can have a piece of cake, but how can you have a day? It’s a reflexive, “have (for) yourself a nice day,” but most reflexives are not directly expressed in spoken English, except maybe in the South? “You’all have yourselves a nice day, now.”
So the imprecision in English structure makes it very easy to construct ways to say things, but difficult to make sense of why things sound the way they do. In German you’ll always know how something sounds, but the rules to construct phrases are difficult to grasp.
To, from, of: there are about 5 times as many ways to make these connections in German, depending on the what and how the “to, from or of “applies, all of which don’t apply in English, were dropped. The = die, der, das, den, dem - these all circle around each other in a mad dance depending on gender (3!), object, subject. I know, Russian has even more of this, for example. In French, Spanish, Italian there is at least some broad convention about how to tell masculine from feminine nouns, but not so in German apparently. Everyone tells me, you just have to know. Someday, vielleicht.