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Monday, March 30, 2009

Spanish fluency? I wish.

Today in one of my classes, my professor mentioned that the courts are looking for Spanish interpreters. They need some people who are fluent in Spanish. I would like to apply, but I don't think I'm fluent. So I've had 4 years of Spanish...but I feel like there's still so much that I don't know. I could survive on what I know, but I just don't feel confident. If I listen to the Spanish channel, I just can't keep up. They talk fast and I need time to first identify the Spanish word and then translate it into English. And believe me, that takes time. I'm sure anyone who speaks two or more languages understands this to be true.

So what am I going to do next? Tomorrow, I plan to go to her office to ask her about it. Then I might contact the administrator at the court and see if maybe I could take a fluency test. If I don't pass it, it'll be okay. I just want to see how I'd do. I've never taken a Spanish fluency test or any national Spanish test. So I have no idea how I compare to other Spanish students worldwide. However, I do know that I learn easily. I just love learning.

My plan to improve my Spanish is to see if I can look up some stuff about Spanish, just a little bit a day. It could be about the culture, some sentences in Spanish, a news article, poetry, a story, or even something about the grammar. It's been awhile since I've studied Spanish. I really miss it. But I know that it's still with me. Every time I see a Spanish word or name, I remember how to pronounce it and I might even remember what it means.

It would be even better if I had friends who spoke Spanish or if I could go to Spain or some Spanish-speaking country for a bit. Oh wait...I have a neighbor who is Spanish. Of course! I'm a bit shy, but I'm sure she'd love to talk with me sometime. But first, I need to do some independent learning. First things first.

In other news, things are going well with the tutoring thing. I see my student tomorrow. Yay! I look forward to it. It's fun!

Also, I have to go to a job fair. Well, I don't have to go but I should. I want to see what companies show up and what they have to offer. And I like to see what kinds of stuff they're giving out. Sometimes the gadgets are cool. Lol.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Farewell to Natasha Richardson

I was saddened to read about it on yahoo. I happened to see the headline and then I clicked to read about it. And just yesterday I watched her in the movie "Evening." "Evening" is a good movie, by the way. In the movie, she plays the oldest daughter of a dying old woman who is remembering the past of regret and sadness. And before she dies, she is finally able to forgive herself and let go.

Richardson had hit her head during a beginner skiing lesson. She felt fine, but then hours later she didn't feel well so she was sent to the hospital. She wasn't even 60.

I remember watching her in "A Handmaid's Tale." She was quite young and lively back then. Before the accident, I imagine she was in good health. It is sad to see people go before their time. I pray that Liam Neeson, Vanessa Redgrave, Lynn Redgrave, and the rest of her family can get through their grief and be stronger for it.

Here's a song that I'll dedicate to them:

Monday, March 16, 2009

A new beginning...

Last Thursday, I met with a Thai woman at my town's adult learning center. I will be her new tutor. She is already taking English classes at the center. Now, I will be giving her one-on-one help with her basic reading skills. I will meet with her twice a week. I'm nervous and excited about it. I will meet with her again tomorrow. I have come up with an itinerary. But it's too early for me to know how to teach her. She seems to be doing well in terms of her understanding. It's just the beginning though. I hope to continue helping her for up to a year. It'll be rewarding to see her progress over a matter of months. I have already started a log as of last night. I just write down how I think she did and what we went over.

I am enjoying my first day of Spring break. It feels great. I feel more relaxed and I feel happier. I still have assignments and I want to get started on a research paper (due in May), but now I can sort of take my time and not feel very rushed. I am going to borrow a couple library books, read a little, and then decide how to go from there...what topic I want to learn and write about. I went to the mall with my mother and I got a cute, dark green, teal dress. I like how the hem stops a little above my knees and how the dress is tight under my chest but then it hangs loose and flowy. I wonder when I'll get a chance to wear it.

I hope to be back here soon.