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  • Writer's picturePeter K F Cheung SBS

From Words to Wisdom


  1. FADE IN


  2. Act 1


  3. INT. BEDROOM - 07:45


  4. Waking up, PETER looks good.


  5. PETER (V.O): I slept well last night.


  6. MONTAGE OF PETER'S ACTIVITIES THE DAY BEFORE


  7. A. Hong Kong Airport - 05.00. Peter and his WIFE return to Hong Kong.


  8. B. Living room -10:00. Peter and his wife follow up with matters arising during their absence.


  9. C. Bedroom - 12:00. Both Peter and his wife get up in bed as they can't fall asleep.


  10. D. Living room -14:00. Peter and his wife study the Korean characters and do worksheets together.


  11. E. HKU SPACE - 18:45. Among a class of 22 STUDENTS, Peter and his wife are learning Korean words.


  12. END MONTAGE


  13. Act 2


  14. INT. LIVING ROOM - 08:30


  15. Tapping the Duolingo App on one of his mobiles, Peter begins to practise some Italian words and phrases.

  16. PETER (V.O): Having learned Italian for over a fortnight, I now have no problem in pronouncing "latte".


  17. Pausing.


  18. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): My wife and I had nice gelato in Sydney...Yes, "gracie" is Italian, while "gracias" is Spanish...


  19. Later, Peter practises some Spanish words and phrases.


  20. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): The Spanish "Hola" is the English "Hello" ...

  21. Recalling.


  22. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): In flight from Sydney to Hong Kong, I watched a Spanish movie but could only understand "Si" is "Yes".


  23. Pausing.


  24. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): Perhaps, when I next visit a Spanish restaurant, I may have a different feel when I drink (bebo) and eat (como).


  25. Later, Peter practises some French words and phrases.


  26. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): Every time I practise French, I remember the moments of my first attempt in my 20s and my second attempt in my 50s.


  27. Pausing.


  28. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): As my wife and I are visiting France in July, my better understanding of French might be helpful.


  29. Peter then sees a WhatsApp notification with images taken in Seoul National University.


  30. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): Great! Our elder daughter has got a distinction in level 6 Korean. Let me congratulate her.


  31. We see Peter typing some Korean characters on mobile screen and sending them.


  32. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): Just months ago, it was unthinkable that I'd type in Korean! Our daughter and her fiance would visit Hong Kong later this month.


  33. Later, Peter practises Japanese words and phrases.


  34. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): I now know "a lawyer" is "benkoshi" in Japanese. Yesterday, I decided to visit Osaka next month to practise my Japanese for real.


  35. Thinking.


  36. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): I now think Japanese should be easy to learn, as words, like Chinese, have no gender.


  37. Pausing.


  38. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): Not only that, Japanese doesn't use articles.


  39. Later, Peter learns some Portuguese words and phrases.


  40. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): In Portuguese, it's preferable to add the definite article before a possessive, eg a minha casa (literally: the my house). I think it's hard.


  41. Pausing.


  42. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): In Macau, China, the official languages are Chinese and Portuguese. Some senior civil servants can speak Portuguese, Chinese, and English.


  43. Pausing.


  44. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): In Hong Kong, China, the official languages are Chinese and English. And I'm still learning good Chinese and English.


  45. FLASHBACK


  46. INT. WIPO, GENEVA - DAY (1995)


  47. Sitting behind the plague "Royaume-Uni", Peter (41) observes the delegation HEAD making an intervention. And after the session, Peter speaks to the head.


  48. PETER: Your intervention is eloquent.


  49. HEAD: It's just words.


  50. RETURN TO PRESENT


  51. Act 3


  52. INT. BEDROOM - 22:00


  53. Peter inserts an AI drawing entitled "From Words to Wisdom" to a draft.


  54. PETER (V.O): Language learning can go beyond words and delve into the realm of wisdom.


  55. Pausing.


  56. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): As a language learner, I gain broader perspective of the world and deeper cultural insight.


  57. Thinking.


  58. PETER (V.O) (Cont'd): Language learning is impacting on my personal and intellectual growth, helping me to live my life.


  59. FADE OUT


  60. THE END


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