wow... had no idea a community like this would exist. i'm going to univeristy this sept. to start "offically" learning japanese, mandarin, and korean. i've been doing what i can to learn japanese on my own since i was fifteen and stole a phrase book and tape from my brother. i've taken a continuing education (no credit) class for japanese, 2 for cantonese, and half of one for mandarin. after 10 years, my japanese is shameful, my cantonese worse, and my mandarin non-existent. my first love is japanese but i have an interest in east asian culture and language in general and took up cantonese because i wanted to learn something similar to the dialect my boyfriend's family speaks. he calls it toisan but i've been told by other people that that's not what it's called. if anyone can help me out with learning that dialect, i'd really appreciate it. his mother speaks english very well but his father barely speaks any. i'd like to get to know him and be able to talk to him in his own language so that he's more comfortable. for now, i can only say thank you, "ho hek", and a smattering of broken cantonese phrases to him. he smiles and nods but understands my english much better than my chinese attempts. it's hard for my boyfriend to teach me anything because i need to see things written down in order for me to pronounce them but he has no idea how to go about romanizing it for me. all i can say in his dialect is my stomach hurts and i'm full.