Trying to master a foreign language

Archive for the category “Languages”


This blog is about my life in Spanish. I am not a native Spanish speaker. Spanish is a language I learned late in life, after my mother died. That was 10 years ago. She was 62–far too young. I was 38, and I suddenly realized that I was not going to live forever, and that whatever I wanted to do, I had better do now. There were two things I had always wanted to do: learn Spanish and play the cello.

This blog is mainly about Spanish, which I will never speak as well as I speak my native languages, French and English. In Spanish, I will always be something of an impostor. I will never really understand it or truly know it from the inside. It will never trip off my tongue effortlessly.

Learning a language is a hopeless, futile quest, but all the better. As Cyrano de Bergerac (an impostor himself) would have it, “c’est bien plus beau lorsque c’est inutile.” I know, I know, that’s French. A reference to Quijote would undoubtedly be more appropriate. Desafortunadamente (my favorite word in Spanish–impossible not to get it wrong), I have yet to read that great classic: another item on my seemingly endless list of “Things To Do in Spanish”.

In the process of discussing Spanish, I may also touch on other topics that matter to me: work, music (I did learn the cello, by the way), books, relationships, exercise, cooking, children, friends, family–what are blogs for if not to share all sorts of personal details with the universe–is someone out there?

Dear Reader, should you turn out to exist, your input and comments are highly valued and eagerly awaited.


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