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Great post. - thanks for sharing, Wendy!

An interesting linguistic oddity I know firsthand is the Urdu/Hindi case - both languages are basically the same language (I grew up learning Urdu as my second language) - but they are written in two entirely different ways. Urdu using a Persian-based script that is similar to Classical Arabic (but not the same - for instance, there is no "p" in Arabic but obviously there is in Persian - which led to the can of "bebsi" cola I still have as a souvenir from my trip to the Mideast twenty years ago...), while Hindi is written with a form of Sanskrit. So while I can have a conversation with friends who are Hindi speakers, I can't read a word of it when it is written, and they can't read any Urdu.
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