Back in my school days I took a bit of Spanish. I was surprised how little I remember 30 years later. My trick for getting it back – practice, speaking Spanish whenever possible and don’t worry too much about humiliating myself.
My girls, on the other hand, are a bit more cautious with their words.
Generally, I talk with my hands, even when speaking English, so face to face are my best communications. The expression on the face of the person I am talking with is a great gauge of my success, or failure. Here are a few of my funny translations:
Recently I attempted to buy a good pair of walking shoes, but instead I asked for “a good pair of shoes to eat.”
If you have been following our adventures, you might remember that I tried to tell someone my husband was sad, but instead I said “my husband is small.”
I have used the wrong gender pronouns, publicly accusing hubby of doing something my daughter actually did. And worse, when he got his hair cut, I thought I told the women to leave his curls, but instead she cut them all off and my average/long haired hubby ended up with practically no hair.
I will admit, speaking the native language was a bit easier for me in England. (Not so much in Ireland and Scotland).
I finally decided it was time of the girls to throw caution to the wind and start using more of the Spanish they know. Part of their homeschool curriculum was a year doing a self-study Spanish course and then a term with a brilliant private Spanish tutor.
Now, I will be the first to admit, that I am a huge part of their lack of conversational opportunities stems from my taking over their Spanish conversations with adults.
Today was different. Today was my teens turn. I was going to zip my lips.
All was going well.
She obtained a map, found the key tourist points, found the best place for food and even found out where teens hang out in the evening. Then we learned of a free tour in the old city. All we had to do was call up and register. So I dialed the number, and then quickly, before she had a chance to run away, handed the phone to my teen. Here is what transpired:
Hola, Habla Ingles? (Hello, do you speak English?)
(Spoken In English) Here, my mom wants to talk to you . . .
In the interest of fairness, I will say that I was proud of her, and overall she did a good effort, and no surprise to me, she discovered that she can in fact ask simple questions, understand responses and get what she needs.
Albom Family Travel Counter:
We are in the fifth month of our 250 day overseas adventure. We are currently spending two weeks in Galicia region of Spain as part of a home exchange. If you don’t want to miss any of our adventure you can:
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- The book my girls are using: Spanish, Middle / High School (Skills for Success), by Cynthia Downs