NaBloPoMo November 2012 Prompt
Monday, November 26, 2012:
Do you speak more than one language? How did you learn the additional languages?
I am rather embarrassed to admit that, despite the fact that I live in a bilingual country, I am fluent in only one language. (I am particularly humbled when I think of my numerous friends and acquaintances from outside North America who speak English as fluently as I, despite the fact that it’s their second – or sometimes even third – language!)
And yet, I have always dreamed of becoming fluent – or at least somewhat conversant – in a second language.
French has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember, from my earliest days of TV watching with the Canadian version of Sesame Street and its preschool-level French language segments, to the bilingual packaging on commercial products throughout our house, to four years of high school French classes and, as an adult, evening language lessons with Alliance française de Victoria.
But despite the fact that the language was a constant throughout my life, and that I wanted to become fluent, I never actually progressed past a very basic understanding of French. I regret that.
More recently – say, within the past two or three years – I have taken an interest in learning Italian. I started out by purchasing several reference and text books and attempting to teach myself some basics, then, needing the motivation and accountability of a group, enrolled this fall in a college-level evening class.
I like the challenge of absorbing a brand-new language (although my elementary knowledge of French keeps jumping in and confusing me!), and hope to carry on with the second level of classes in January. I don’t know how far I’ll get, or where it will take me, but I am greatly enjoying the process of learning and broadening my horizons.
Despite my advancing years, I have no plans to let go of my long-held dream to some day have the ability to speak with someone in another language… to be understood… and to understand.
Do you speak more than one language?