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Jul 16

Mi fetcha es Hans… eh?

After a day and a half of eating sleeping and breathing the Spanish language we finally hit the classroom to learn how to speak.  The professor passed out a placement exam to make sure we were all correctly placed in beginning Spanish.  The first blank on the test said Fetcha.  Several of us wrote our names in this blank.  Apparently the word fetcha means date.  This was the first clue we gave our instructor that we were all about as clueless as is possible.  I believe the assumption may have been made that at least some of us had taken a Spanish class of some sort before today.  In truth, I did take and pass a semester of Spanish a year and a half ago, but that professor and I both know that C was a gift.

It was quite a bit chaotic for most of the class as we explained to our professor that although most international students take three weeks to do a semester’s worth of learning, we would be doing a semester each week for only two.  And of course, one of the 10 days is a national holiday in costa Rica.  Our professor seemed slightly confused to hear this and was also surprised at our amazing lack of prior Spanish language knowledge.  However after it became abundantly clear that we were all starting from square one, we began to learn our definite and indefinite feminine and masculine articles.  I had had this thrown at me before and it never made any sense.  I figured out how to pass the tests, but I had no real idea why or what I was doing.  Today I GOT IT!  Thank God!

Prior attempts at Spanish have been absolute failures mostly because I was often so far behind everyone.  For better or worse, this class is full of people that need the same level of help that I do and we slowed it down and got it.  After class my head was swimming lie it always does when I’m learning something new, but the difference is I really understood.  Maybe its because people have been speaking spanish at me for a couple days, or maybe its because I’m with a group of people in the same boat as me.  We are all very intelligent thoughtful people, but we just don’t have a clue yet.  I’m not sure why we had to travel to Costa Rica to find this success, but for a million reasons, I’m glad we did.

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