Salt Lake City (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I have learned 2 languages, not counting English, in 2 very different situations. I learned Thai as a 19-20 year old missionary for my church in Thailand. I HAD to learn and my ability to be a missionary would have been very limited without being able to speak Thai.
On the other hand, I chose Spanish because it’s something I have always wanted to learn. I don’t NEED to know it. In fact, it’s hard for my to find a normal opportunity to converse with someone in Spanish even though I live in a semi-Spanish speaking country. I am also learning it as a full-time working father of 4 kids. To say that the two experiences are not the same would be the understatement of the year.
The Biggest Difference
The biggest difference for me has been how I handle finding a native speaker Continue reading
When I started this blog, it was actually a Spanish blog. I eventually started a separate Thai blog, before I eventually combined them both into this one blog. While many have followed me for a while now, most probably were not there from the beginning, there fore I thought I would repost one of my old post from when it was just a Spanish blog. With out further ado, Seesaws: The key to success in language learning and in life.
How many of us can sympathize with the picture on the left. All of our lives are full of ups and downs and this only gets exaggerated when one does anything new or attempts to change anything in their life. It is hard to learn something new and doing anything that disrupts our routine is painful.
We can be on top of the world one moment and down in the dumps another. These drastic changes are the biggest reasons we fail to follow through on new things we want to do in our lives. Hows did your New Year’s resolutions work out this year?
It’s just too uncomfortable dropping, from such high heights to such low lows, that we would rather not do it again. So when the first sign of ”failure” happens, we loose all motivation we need to keep going. There is a trick, though, Continue reading
When ever you go to a new country, there is undoubtably going to be a culture shock. Thai culture is no exception to that rule. I loved learning and living in Thai culture when I was there. The one thing about Thai culture, that I always found interesting was how Thais could be so polite and respectful one moment( This is called เกรงใจ kreng jai in Thai) and then they will turn around and tell you that you are fat the next moment. In fact I was called fat, or some variation of fat, by almost everyone I was introduced to in Thailand.
I soon realized that physical characteristics are fair game in Thailand. I also quickly learned that words like fat don’t always have the negative implication that automatically goes with the same word in English. To a Thai, saying “you are looking kinda round today” is no more offensive than saying “you are looking very lovely today.” Both are just observations. In fact, bothare usually said with a sense of endearment. Me being called fat all the time, helped me get one of my favorite nicknames that I ever received, while in Thailand.
Nicknames in Thailand
Let me step back for a moment and talk about another bit of Thai culture. Continue reading