Anyone ever have one of those interminable moments where you can’t seem to come up with the right answer? I was on KameSame reviewing my WaniKani material and I had to remember the word for “soon” or “coming days”. I stared at the screen for minutes. I had the idea it was きんにち, but the kanji wouldn’t match.
I felt really stupid when I remembered the じつ reading for 日. Really, really stupid.
I do it every day too, but usually it’s with newer stuff. I feel really dumb when I forget something that I already knew. That’s why I use KameSame (and because it makes me remember from scratch, without the kanji on screen giving me clues), but I’ve been slacking on that and learning grammar on Bunpro instead. Guess that’ll teach me!
They actually are, just that one of the two can have both meanings. I don’t know if WK only teaches one for each so that you won’t confuse them. 近年 is the one that can only mean ‘recent years’. 近日 can mean both ‘coming days’ and ‘recent days’. My guess is this: it might be harder to project yourself years into the future, so 近年 just refers to the past. Projecting yourself a few years forward or backward isn’t too hard mentally, so 近日 can mean both. Perhaps the ‘future’ meaning is preferred because the ‘past’ meaning overlaps with 先日.