Wednesday, May 16, 2012

#4 - That "well-rounded" education could pay off

Students everywhere have designated the I-will-never-ever-use-anything-I-learn-in-this-class-again title to a foreign language class. They just know they will never need it. Well, I am SO glad I took Spanish!

I've learned quickly that Italian is very similar to Spanish...and I love Spanish! It has been helpful in understanding a few things people say and quite a few signs! Numbers are almost exactly the same! Now I wish I knew more Spanish...

While in the airport, the signs were all translated into English...

...which was horrible preparation for what would happen when I stepped outside the English!

Jeremy took Logan, my traveling buddy, away from me because we didn't have room in the taxi...but thankfully, I had two new friends to experience this culture shift with me - Amanda and Jen. (See lesson #5 - Make friends.)

Our taxi driver didn't know where to take us...and for the first time on this trip, the thought occurred to me, "You don't speak English, do you?" I looked to the left and right of me at travelers in cars as we zoomed past them (speedy cab driver) and thought, "and neither do you...or you...or you..." I was surrounded. I was surrounded by people I didn't understand. A little frightening, maybe. Okay, yes, very. But, gets better...
After we arrived at our destination (by handing him a piece of paper with the address on it), I asked "How much does it cost?" (in Italian!) and I understood him when he told me 40 euros (in Italian!)! It was so exciting!...if you can't tell from all of the !!!!s. =)

Of course it is harder to speak Italian than it is to read it, but I'm just excited that I can understand some things!

It's definitely better to know some Italian phrases - so far I've used "excuse me," "thank you," "you're welcome," "goodbye," and "how much does it cost?" I need to learn words like "here" and "sorry" (because obviously I need to apologize for not knowing what people are saying, like this RUDE lady at the market). I also need to learn the word "this" so I can point at things I can't pronounce or don't know.

Off to learn a few more things in Italian...Never stop learning! Hey, maybe by the time I'm ready to come home, my blog will be "Life Lessons Learned in a Country Where I Didn't Understand Anyone but Now I Do."




"This money is so PRETTY!" - Me

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