...I struck up a conversation with a Hispanic couple who are regulars.
It was mostly “Spanglish”/”Espanglés”—the husband is bilingual, but not sure if the wife is. I explained (as I usually do in an initial convo in Spanish) where I learned how to speak it, although I added that my mother and baby sister were more immersed in the language and I was a little jealous of their fluency.
I suppose I was a bit lazy, since I kept floating back to English. But… it’s a new opportunity, nevertheless. 5 years ago
Had a quick chat with our across-the-way neighbor as my daughter and I were off to the recycling center.
I also took a moment to comment on the blog of a VOXer in Spain. 5 years ago
I have a few things going for me:
1. Learning Spanish is a patriarchial tradition of my family
2. I’m LDS (Mormon), so a lot of friends are either Anglos that have served Spanish-speaking missions, or are Hispanic themselves—see #1
3. My mother and baby sister are fairly fluent
4. I now live in a neighborhood where there are more Hispanics, some speaking mostly Latin American Spanish
5. I started somewhat early (see below)
Progress up to this point in time:
1. Started studying in 8th grade
2. Studied through part of high school with a teacher that was a native speaker
3. Studied more in 3rd year of college
4. Practiced with aforementioned friends. Didn’t realize the impact it had until someone said I had a weird accent. Apparently, I was switching between dialects that various friends spoke.
5. Been in contact with primarily Spanish-speaking contacts through a support group online. Not quite the same, as I haven’t had many spoken connections.
6. Started shopping at the supermercado for some of my groceries (mostly produce) as it’s been cheaper. If I eat at the carnecería/tortillería (deli, basically), I must speak Spanish. Cimmy loves it, too—on one trip, one of the abuelitas at the torillería offered her and us some fresh tortillas. She’s still struggling with her Spanish, but she was tickled pink.
7. Cimmy is somewhat outgoing, and is getting to know our Hispanic neighbors. Through various means, this means homemade tamales and pozole comes home now and then, but it also makes it easier to be part of a conversation when she’s there. 5 years ago