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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Too much food for the brain

So we took a good start with our Russian class. We have a new teacher this year which corresponds to a new style. She is a native speaker and we will talk talk talk this year. That's good. I think we are all ready for it. We have seen most of the basic grammar and vocabulary the previous years; the foundations have been laid and we can now start putting the acquired knowledge into practice.

There is a little nostalgia sometimes. Our previous teacher is teaching the first year Russian on the same evening in the classroom next to ours. So we peep into the classroom during the перерыв and remember the days where we were now learning the cyrillic alphabet. We started the first lessons with about 25 students. Only 9 of us persevered. Well done, classmates :-)

In the meantime, I am wondering whether I should quickly start learning some Spanish as I will be going to Bilbao next weekend. I think I will drop the idea. First of all, Bilbao is located in the Basque part of Spain and many people speak Euskera there, not Spanish. Next to that, I am in the middle of a lot of training at work: project management, activity based management and that sort of topics; quite different I know but there is a limit to how much new information someone can absorb. Can food for the brain also be overdone? Is there something as a Brain Mass Index?

Anyway, I decided that this weekend at least I will give my brains a little rest and instead will shamelessly 'hang out' with my little daughters - read: dress up as a princess or a witch (the latter being mostly my role), paint your face in all colours, watch 'Oggy and the cockroaches', 'Looney tunes' and other sorts of other crappy tv entertainment (and laugh like crazy), jump on the trampoline, colour Top model and Disney drawings,...

Saturday, September 3, 2011

First schoolday

Classes started again last week, on 1 September to be precise. My daughters had an excellent first schoolday, happy to see all their friends again. And mummy had the same experience in the evening :-)

Yes, we had our first Russian lesson last week. I wasn't really looking forward to it. One reason was that I had finished the German course only a few days before. I had really enjoyed the course but it was also very intensive and I felt as if I could use a break. But no no, I was going to jump from one language into another.

Another reason why I was reluctant to go, was that I had started wondering why I was putting all this time and effort in a language that I - let's be honest - still do not speak after 4 years of evening school and that I do not need in my life at all, not for private reasons, not for professional reasons.

But I went to that first lesson after all and hey, almost all classmates of last year were there and it was good to see each other again. And by the end of the lesson, I had this feeling of 'come on, I will go for it another year'. But I have a goal! I must open my mouth this year. I am one of these people who are reluctant to speak a language as long as they can make an utter fool of themselves.

So, be my witness: I will have conversations, I will communicate in Russian by the end of the year! Otherwise I quit.