How to make an emo unhappy

9 November 2010

… just do as Lucy suggests…

are we REALLY REALLY unhappy now????

I have been wanting to share this picture with you for a long time… Lucy was just doodling around and this is what happened. I rather like them… Linus produced some wickedly funny comic strips. He is not happy to share the one I like most with this world, but his carrot and stick approach is pretty good too. Enjoy!

I am not producing pictures, but I am at long last doing something about my French! I joined a tandem course with the Goethe Institute here in Lyon. The first group meeting was about three weeks ago, and we were assigned our tandem partners for the next six months there and then. I have been partnered up with a nice elderly man and now we meet once or twice a week to talk for two hours: one hour in French, one in German. So far we have met twice and we will meet again this Friday to talk French and German culture, history, food, points of view… it is very very enjoyable. There is always something to talk about because we have pretty different experiences to exchange and those two hours we have scheduled for our learning tend to go by very quickly. But I am truly tired afterwards. I find it rather knackering to find my French vocabulary, ways to describe things for which I do not have vocabulary … what’s worse is when I have to try and talk about German grammar. AARGHHH! This is not easy for me: I got the worst mark possible in a German grammar test about 3 decades ago… I think I have improved since, particularly with all those years and years of Latin I subsequently had to endure, but I have not improved THAT much. So you will see me struggling with the grammar during our tandem session and I do my best not to draw attention to grammatical questions, if possible. But I find other things challenging too. For example finding some correct expressions in German, when there is a wonderful, practical, and so-to-the-point word available in ENGLISH!!! Often, vocabulary in English comes so much easier to me. I am still waiting for this phase of verbal confusion to end. But maybe it’s too late, maybe I have to live with all these compartments in my brain, that just open up like a pandora’s box at times of linguistic challenge and I am given some word, any word, before I can think about it properly. Maybe once my French is up to scratch, the compartments in my head will work properly again? I am living in hope, because somehow my children do not seem to have the same problem… Is this an age thing? A brain thing? I will ask my brain hero husband, I am sure he has an answer for me….

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