It's been now about one month since I've started taking Ifugao classes. Indeed, as I suspected before, the dialect spoken in Banaue is classified by SIL not as Tuwali, but as Amganad. And well, although I'd be more favorable to learn my teacher's dialect, after talking to some people from neighboring municipalities and also seeing how this dialect deals some words that differ in the different dialects, I think the idea of learning that of Banaue is at least reasonable.
I'm still trying to elicit different sentence structures and basic function words. For the past week, we focused on verb patterns, since none of the grammar sketches available have a neat table for that. There are still some verbal affixes that I'm missing, but I guess I'm going to leave them for later. Whether I'm going to successfully be able to pick up Ifugao or not is still uncertain, but I can tell I've been having a lot of fun and it's became my new hyperfocus now.
Anyway, so far so good. Let's see how much longer it's going to take until I get frustrated by yet another Philippine language I try to learn... :)
Researchers and native speakers almost never agree on what is perceived as the same or a separated language. On a micro level, it's even more frequent for speakers to overemphasize differences and regard their neighbors as an out-group. This time around, however, quite the opposite seems to have happened.
Two days ago, I took my first Ifugao lesson and I'm really excited to learn more about it. The speaker referred to it as "Hapit", which simply means "speech" or "language", so before the lesson I had no idea of what dialect it'd be. I honestly got a little bit confused by his explanation on his background. Anyway, he said that rather than teaching me his dialect, he'd teach me Tuwali as spoken in Banaue, more exactly in the barangay Poblacion, which according to him is more widely understood and not stigmatized (perhaps even regarded as some kind of prestigious speech?).
Here's the thing: SIL lists it as Amganad, while Tuwali would be a different dialect. However, this news story from the Philippine News Agency mentions that "[t]he Tuwali dialect [is] spoken in the upland towns of Kiangan, Hingyon, Hungduan, Asipulo, Lagawe, Banaue, and parts of Lamut, or seven of the 12 towns of Ifugao province in northern Philippines", with does corroborate with my teacher's classification. I would be curious, though, to hear from someone from the southern part of Ifugao if they regard the language as spoken in Banaue as being the same as their own as well or a different one.
In my ignorance regarding this question, for the meantime I'm gonna limit myself to try to learn more about the dialect about Banaue first. I can always go back to the same sentences later and ask my teacher to give me the counterparts in his own dialect, whichever it is...
I'm usually not the one who lets go first. Really. I keep thinking about people who probably have already forgotten me. I'm also that guy who remembers forever awkward things about people and makes them embarrassed for bringing up the past every now and then. And they do hate me for that. Nevertheless, I still love to reminisce just the same. I mean, what's so bad about cherishing some good old memories? It makes me feel alive. And lonely AF sometimes as well.
This pandemic has definitely taught me to say goodbye to things, some for good, some just temporarily. But knowing myself, I can tell that I won't be coming back to many of them anymore.
After using the same domain name for as long as half of my life, I think it's time to just let go and move on. I might regret it in the near future (or perhaps as soon as it expires). I sure will. As pathetic as it sounds, here I am now, trying to convince myself of having made the best, and maybe the most difficult decision ever in my whole life. But for what's worth, I promise to try not to look back this time around.