Welcome to an interview with a special student of the Serbian language for foreigners who comes from faraway China. We will get to know his experiences, his love for the Serbian language and culture. We will learn more about his learning goals and challenges. We are pleased to present to you the story of this young enthusiast who fell in love with the Serbian language and decided to explore it in the very heart of the Balkans – Niš. Join us as we discuss his experiences on this enchanting language journey. The interview was conducted in Serbian.
- What is your real name and how did you choose your Serbian first and last name?
My name is Wang Boqing (in Chinese culture and our language, the last name is pronounced first and then the first name. I learned that it is incorrect according to the Serbian spelling) . So Wang is my last name and Boqing is my first name. Also, I have my own Serbian name that I gave myself to facilitate communication with my friends and lecturers in Serbia. My name is Alek Nišić. In my Chinese surname, “Wang” means “king”, and the name “Boqing” means “boss”. That’s why my Serbian name is “Aleksandar” (like the king), and my surname is “Nišić” (as I always say that Niš is my second home in the world, that’s why my Serbian surname is Nišić). I’d like to say that I’m partly a citizen of Niš. That’s how my name in Serbia is Alek Nišić.
- What country are you from?
I’m from China.
- How long have you been learning Serbian?
I have been learning Serbian for two years and seven months.
- Which parts of the Serbian language do you like to learn the most?
What I like most is learning the names of countries and learning to sing songs in Serbian.
- Have you visited any city in Serbia? Which one did you like the most?
Of course yes! I visited many places with my friends. Niš, Belgrade, Novi Sad, Bor, Loznica, Kruševac and so on. However, Nis won my heart, that’s why my last name is “Nišić”. Nis is a very green, peaceful, pleasant city. I like Bubanj and Tvrđava. I met friends who come from all over the world here in Nis. I like it the fact that Nis is so international and that people here like to make friends with foreigners.
- What are the similarities and differences between the Serbian and Chinese languages?
Basically, I think there are no similarities between the Chinese and Serbian languages. NOT AT ALL! The Chinese language is not like other languages. And the differences are big, one of the first to be noticed is that in the Chinese language we don’t have the letter “R” and we use Chinese characters.
- What surprises you the most in Serbian culture and customs?
Let’s say, “we Serbs, men and women from Rakija” – drink brandy like water! I’m just kidding about customs. As for Serbian food – it is too salty for me. While, let’s say, nightlife in Serbia is the best in the world. People are sociable, they easily make friends with strangers. Young people go to parties at 10 in the evening and end their parties at 4 in the morning. I have not met that anywhere so far.
- What are your favorite Serbian words or phrases?
To me, “Prayer” and “Cheers”.
- Do you like Serbian food? Which Serbian dish do you like the most?
Yes, I like gourmet burgers, sarma and skewers.
- What are your goals in learning the Serbian language?
I would like to get a C1 certificate in the future. I love languages. After completing the language course, I would like to return to Serbia and find a job here. For me, Nis is the ideal city to live in.
The interview was conducted by Marko Radulović, an online lecturer of the Serbian language of the Academic Serbian Association, the only accredited school for learning the Serbian language in online classes. Sign up for a free first trial lesson and learn with us. See you!