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我本来只是抱着试一试的想法去参加比赛的, 没想到居然获得了冠军。 这不但让朋友感到吃惊而且让父母很高兴。

I found this sentence difficult to understand mostly because of 我本来只是抱着试一试的想法去参加比赛的 and don't know how to break it down.

我本来 I originally 只是 only? 抱着试一试的想法 hug and try at the same time? thoughts? 参加比赛的 attend the game

Obviously, I am in a mess and need some clearing up.

Thank you.

  • bkrs :抱 (8) 怀藏, 心里存有 [cherish] iciba :不抱幻想了was soon disillusioned,抱同情 sympathetic 抱憾 regret;be sorry 心存遗憾, 抱恨 have a gnawing regret 心中怀有恨事, 抱恨终天 harbor an eternal sorrow 终天:终其天年,即终生。指心存怨恨难消,直到死 – user6065 Jul 26 '18 at 15:29
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The interpretation of 我本來 and 衹是 are fine.

  • 抱着 (literally to hug, but should be interpreted as to grasp onto)
  • 試一試的想法 (a thought of just trying)
  • 參加比賽的 (to participate in a competition)

我本來衹是抱着試一試的想法去參加比賽的

I originally participated in the competition holding on to the thought of just giving it a go

  • Is there also a 是。。 的 construction here? Or is 只是 a word itself? – 金允雄Oliver Jul 26 '18 at 13:55
  • @金允雄Oliver 只是 in your sentence means only. – dan Jul 26 '18 at 14:02
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From your comments the only thing you're missing is:

抱着....的想法

To hold a [certain] idea.

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