We asked the question: If you started learning Arabic, why did you quit? on Quora and we got this interesting answer from Luay Ramadan

I quit many times because there were just too many dialects and synonyms for one simple word. Only native and select few foreign/western Arabs understand most dialects and understand most of the synonyms. I eventually did end up learning Levantine Arabic just because it’s the most widely understood dialect in my honest opinion, and is closest to Modern Standard Arabic (which is what I was learning for a few months beforehand).

The Interesting Caveat

I once was heading back to Australia from Baghdad international airport, and to get to the airport itself you need to go through 2 checkpoints in which armed guards search you, one with your bags and one without.

On the 2nd checkpoint everyone in the car had to leave the vehicle WITHOUT their bags, me being me I took my bag with me and the guards pointed their guns at me screaming “Hut’ chantak ‘al arid! Hessa! ” (meaning “Put your bag on the ground now”), problem is I knew ‘now’ as “Hallaq/Al’an, and ‘bag’ as “Shanta”, that’s how it is in Levantine Arabic that’s how it is in MSA. So I went backwards not dropping my bag and they charged their weapons telling me to stop – “Guf! Ta-ra armi!”(“Stop or I will shoot”).

Problem is, in Levantine Arabic it’d be “Qaf! Aw-ra/ta armi”, which is nearly identical to Modern Standard Arabic. Thankfully I realised that everyone left their bags except for me, so I dropped my bag, pooped my pants and apologised saying that I didn’t know Arabic.So I’m grateful I didn’t die that day because of non-existent letters (the letters “ch” and “g” don’t exist in Arabic, however Iraqis, Egyptians, Maghrebis and many more use them, which is why I didn’t understand what was being said to me).

I completely stopped learning Arabic after I went back to Australia just because I got sick and extremely frustrated of learning so much but yet so little. It’s such a useful and beautiful language, but you really have to be prepared for criticisim and feeling like you’ve wasted your time even though you haven’t.

–End of answer–

Interesting, hah? So… What is your reason?

Find other interesting questions and answers on our top sections of Quora’s content.