Watch Your Language!

14 thoughts on “Watch Your Language!”

  1. Konnen sie das bitte wiederholen? Veilen danke.

    P.S. The auto correct function on my phone hated this response. The phone is one more auto correct from destruction at this point.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Such an awesome article. I currently know enough Spanish to get around in Spanish speaking countries, but would like to become more fluent. Learning a third language would be a dream! And I saw your reference to the Sahara Ultra Marathon. Have you seen the documentary “Desert Runners”? I would love to complete one of the four one of these years.

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  3. I speak three languages fluently and have compartmentalized them so fully I tend to struggle to translate even the most basic sentences when caught of guard. However, I have no idea how I did it. So alas all the help I can give you is let you know it is possible. Buena suerte!

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    1. Muchas gracias. You are so talented to be able to speak three languages fluently. I can get by in French and Spanish, and I’m grateful for that, but definitely not fluent. On a side note, it’s funny how my elementary students declare in all seriousness that they speak, say, Chinese, because their friend taught them 2 words in Chinese. I don’t want to burst your bubble kiddo, but…
      Oh, and I almost forgot – welcome back to the bloggosphere. I was worried you’d left us for good. Glad to see you were just taking a little break. I actually mentioned it to the husband. I was like, “I wonder where A Restless Traveler is. I hope she’s OK and nothing bad has happened.”

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      1. I’d like to say it was talent but really it was just luck, having parents from different nationalities means I had no option in the matter. Further proof is that all my adult attempts at learning a 4th language have never taken me very far.

        As for my disappearance fear not, I’m here to stay. Just had my best friend over visiting me for the holidays and had no time left for blogging.

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  4. I read your whole post and this is what I think: language mixing happens when you don’t know the language deep enough, so the best thing for you might be to deepen your knowledge of one language before start learning another language.

    When my sister and I learned French after learning English our English improved (we don’t know why). As you know, French and Spanish are fairly similar, they’re both romance languages so when you get a good grasp of either one of them, you might be able to extrapolate your knowledge without confusion because you know them good enough individually, thus it would be saving you time at the long run.

    I would also recommend that you divide your language journey in two main aspects: phonetics (hearing and speaking) and vocabulary (reading and writing). For example, you study with this pattern: Mondays for hearing, Tuesdays for speaking and writing, etc. You find specific books about each aspect, study them separately and integrate them with practice: write articles, record yourself speaking French and assess your performance, etc. Always give feedback to yourself and know the reasons why writing or speaking this or that way is correct or wrong. If you do this for a long period of time, let’s say one year, you will see the difference.

    I hope this helps!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think you’re right… if I had started learning French back when I knew Spanish really well (say, right after college) I’ll bet there would have been a lot less mixing. Unfortunately, I started learning French at a point when my Spanish had barely been used for years.

      I like your suggestion for dividing the language learning that way. The husband and I really have to get back into speaking French more around the house – that’s a great natural listening/speaking activity. I’m more motivated now to get back into the French. Thanks for your insights and thorough advice. Merci and gracias!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome. I’m happy to know you liked the suggestion. I hope that you achieve your language learning goals this year. Also, I’m a native Spanish speaker so if you need anything that I might be able to help you with feel free to let me know. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I have no useful advice but a lot of sympathy. I believe that languages we know well colonize distinct parts of our brains. Languages we don’t know well all roll themselves in together so that under pressure you’re as likely to pull out a word in Estonian as in French. Even if you only know one word in Estonian.

    With that out of the way, I read an Italian novel in translation (sorry–can’t remember much about it) in which a character says, “He was a foreigner, so we just used the infinitive.”

    Liked by 1 person

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