well this is either going to turn out to be the best decision i’ve made in at least a year OR a total train wreck.
so here’s the deal: i have homework. HOMEWORK, people. i hated school the first time around. then the second wasn’t as bad. so here’s to hoping the third time is absolutely kickass. a breeze. (ok. so it’s not really school, let’s be honest, but hell, if there’s homework i’m allowed to call it anything i want.)
but come on.
ich viel zu lernen haben. (i have a lot to learn.)
and yes, i looked that up. and damn, if i ain’t gettin’ good at looking things up.
so yeah. you guessed it. i’m learning german. well, i’m attempting to learn some key phrases and words in german. let’s say that. for now, at least.
i’ve been listening to german cds i bought for a little over a week now, and the kids and i are all doing well on picking up some phrases that we actually can use correctly. big win. then i poked around on the internet for german classes, tutors, that kind of thing, and found a woman who teaches six classes on the southside. sounded good to me. a way to ease in. see how i like it before doing something drastic, like enrolling in a real college class (gasp!).
so. today was the day.
on my way to the german-american klub (yes, that’s how they spell it), i was a bit worried for many reasons, not least of which was i have this absolute fear and am easily embarrassed to speak in front of people in another language. i took latin in high school for four years and i remember counting the classmates ahead of me and figuring out which sentence was mine so i could go over and over it before it was my turn. like some neurotic freak, i was sweaty and my voice was shaking by the time they made their way to me. it was simply dreadful.
then, in college, i took portuguese (don’t ask) and … same thing. only this time? FOUR people in the class. it was my turn much quicker. and to make it worse, as if it could be, the first semester was taught by a woman who had a brazilian accent and the second was a dude with a portuguese accent. it KILLED ME DEAD. i still have nightmares.
you think i’m kidding. there’s a difference. really. a big difference. and it sucked.
i am sad to admit this, but my ears are not trained to hear other languages correctly. maybe i’m deaf. maybe i was born with some defect that allows my ears to only determine two languages: english and southern.
i don’t know. but seriously, i look at people dumbfounded when they speak to me in another language. even after learning so many important words and phrases before heading to paris … it didn’t matter. nothing helped. everyone was speaking to me at least 100 words per second (i swear) and then they’d look at me, furrow their brow, tilt their head and tap their pen on their order form.
no. no i don’t.
anyway. here i am. i’m almost 39 years old and i’m learning german. i’m trying. and the most incredible thing has happened:
surprisingly, today’s class went well. we went over a whole list of vocabulary words, learned our ABCs, learned to count to 10 and then had two pop quizzes.
and you know what? i got all the answers correct WITHOUT CHEATING.
and ohmygod, all these teachers know each other. she made us go around the table to read all our words, numbers, colors and other words aloud. but hell. i was on a roll. why stop now? so i volunteered to go first. and i didn’t sound like an ass.
later, as the teacher was going over proper pronunciations, i apologized for interrupting, “but you have a spider on the neck of your shirt. let me get that for you.” (i was sitting next to her, after all, and there was a spider about to go down into her shirt. it was the least i could do.)
teacher’s pet. high-five.
yeah. i was that girl. but really, there was a spider.
high five. i swear to you she gave me two high fives. in my first class. i was the only one she did that to.
yeah. i’m that girl.
for whatever reason, this felt right. i think having this slight cold and scratchy throat today helped tremendously. and having MY NAME on the vocabulary sheet kinda, sorta kicked ass as well (grau=gray in german. even i knew that one).
anyway. yeah. i’m taking german.
wish me luck.
club klub. ain’t it cute?)