Friday, July 27, 2012

Spanish classes.

I've actually been thinking of taking up Spanish classes for a while now. There are many reasons for this. First of all, I've acquired a number of Spanish friends since coming here and when I'm around them, they all speak English. That's very nice of them but, I think you'll all agree, somewhat inconvenient. Secondly,  while travelling in Spain with the parentals, it was a bit frustrating to not really know what to say to people in terms of instructions or what they were saying to me. Clearly, the solution is to learn Spanish, and this decision was made easier when Ele told me that the Muncher Volkschochshule (similar to the CAE) were have a *Spanischen Sommer* special where various Spanish-related courses (e.g. dancing) were offered at a moderately cheap price. SOLD!!!

This announcement was met with a degree of disbelief from my German friends. "But you can't speak German properly yet!" was a common refrain. I agreed - but perhaps learning a language I didn't know in a language I know imperfectly would help each other out! Other people just pointed and laughed. The Spaniard just said, "Are you sure you need to learn this? Oh well, you'll find it easy since you can already speak French." Now that's positive thinking!

So after the first week of classes (twice a week, 3 hours/session), I've made a number of observations. 

  1. I am literally the only non-German in the class. And the only person of non-European background.
  2. Maybe because of this, my accent is apparently pretty good - I have no problem saying *j* as an aspirated *h* sound compared to others confusing it as a *y* (as in German.
  3. Having said that, after saying *ch* as a *k* sound when reading it in a foreign language for the last 19 months, it was strange to be saying it as a *ch* (as in chocolate) sound again!
  4. I have absorbed many more Spanish words through travelling and listening than I thought I had, to the extent that...
  5. I sometimes actually find that I understand the Spanish instructions more than the German! 
Anyway, for now I'm really enjoying classes. Muy divertido!

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