This week I had my first conversation in Spanish. Not only did I speak Spanish, but someone was listening and responded back in Spanish instantly. I know you are all thinking, “So what?” Well for me this is a big deal. I have never had the chance to have a conversation and have the affirmation that what I am saying is actually comprehensible in a regular every day situation.
I am sure that some were wondering if I would ever talk to anyone in Spanish. Some may have even wondered if I was even trying, since I often commented about how I wasn’t going to let the fact that I had a difficult schedule that made it difficult for me to find theses opportunities. Believe me I was starting to wonder too! I will admit there were several months where I just gave up looking, but I knew that it was going to happen eventually. It had to. Language is used for communication. If I am not communicating, then why am I learning it. Despite it being just one hour, I learned SO MUCH more than I ever thought possible.
Words that are común
One of the things I learned was words that come out in a normal conversation. Words I had never studied, but now I use just because my new Colombian friend used them. Común is the first one. It took all of 2 seconds to realize its meaning, but it seemed amazing that I had never even tried to use it before. It came up in the conversation several times in different ways. Even more fantastic, was that I began to use it. Común became much more común in my spanish by the end of the hour.
Another was the word compañero. This took a few time for me to realize its meaning (at least in the context of our conversation) : colleague. This has never come up in my own studies, but I guess why should it? I have talked to my self for so long I guess it never came up before. Seriously, it has instantly implanted into my brain and I don’t even hesitate now when I want to use it. Amazing things that one conversation can do.
Variations in Colombian Spanish.
I asked my friend what I thought would be a simple question: Does Columbia us tu or vos as an informal form of the word you. The answer was less than simple. Apparently some parts use vos, some use tu, but more often than not they use usted. What?!? I thought usted was formal? Well, according to my friend, Usted is still used formally and tu (or vos in some places) is used in less formal situations, but if it is some one you have a lot of “confianza” in, then Columbians will often use usted. This includes close friends and family members.
If the language wasn’t already confusing! Actually I thought it was fantastic that there was a separation of informal and those whom you showed a much deeper respect and confidence in. Variations are fun and interesting. Its something that should be embraced, not something to be scared of.
Make some videos of my home
My friend recommended that if I wanted to get better at the subject and vocabulary of a subject, I should prepare scripts and make some videos about it. This goes into my latest thoughts I have had about making my weaknesses my strength as well as using scripts to improve my spanish.
That is what I will be doing now. I missed this weeks Spanish Friday video due to a busy week getting ready for certain job interviews. Starting this week onward, I will be doing videos specifically to improve what I want to work on. I am getting out of my comfort zone again! This is great. Hope you are ready!