I’ve had this sense for quite a while that if I don’t learn Spanish, I’m going to feel very left out in 10 years or so. After never quite getting around to a formal program, I decided to just plunge in with a new phrase every few days, and supplement with other nouns and adjectives I can swap out. Not efficient, but something I actually will do, with the help of a couple of phrase books and Spanish for Dummies.
I decided to test my chosen new phrase on my children, who started learning Spanish in kindergarten and first grade.
“En el paseo vi muchas ardillas,” I announced.
They knew some of the words but not all. They furrowed their brows and asked for a translation.
“During the walk I saw many squirrels,” I replied.
They burst out laughing.
Undeterred, I repeated the phrase several times over the next hour. Then I decided to use some of my new nouns. My daughter, who is fond of cows and should know the word, blanked at the muchas vacas.
I approached my son and said, “En el paseo vi muchas mariposas.”
He looked up from his game. “On your walk you saw many butterflies,” he said.
Must have been all those field trips to Dow Gardens.
This post originally appeared on ourMidland.com, the online home of the Midland (MI) Daily News. Republished with permission.