Sunday, March 22, 2015

My week: March 22 ed.

My allergies are still bothering me (surprise surprise) but I can breathe a bit better now than I was before. If I could just muster some more energy, that would be great. I'm not sure what there is about allergies that make me so tired.

-On the German learning front: I had German class and a meeting with my tandem partner. I had been bad about speaking German with her during our last few meetings but we got on track. I understood 99% of what she said, except for a few words I didn't have in my vocabulary. Woot woot! I'm lucky to have such a great tandem partner; she speaks very clearly. I also met up with a German language cafe group and a language cafe for German speakers who wanted to practice English. A member of the latter group helped me finish up my homework, which she proclaimed to be difficult.

The one thing that drives me bonkers about my progress in German is that it takes me a long time to "warm up." I need to listen and then talk a lot to find a more fluent flow to the conversation. This just points to the need to practice more. I'm considering looking for an additional tandem partner but I'm not quite sure where in my schedule I could add another time commitment.

-On the work front: I've been putting together training for employees in my organization. I really, really enjoy this. Originally I was going to be a teacher; my undergraduate education focused on that. However, I moved into a different field and area of study and do not regret moving away from the K-12 field. I have really been enjoying working with adults because, for the most part, they are choosing to attend the training but yet we still have moments where we all get excited about learning something new. I love that. I also had some fun conversations with colleagues and helped troubleshoot some issues so that felt really good.

-On Friday, there was a solar eclipse. A colleague and I tried to take pictures of it with our cell phones, which didn't work that great, since we hadn't done the whole pin hole viewing trick.

-I attended a Danish dinner party. We enjoyed open face sandwiches made in the Danish style; some had reindeer, some had roast beef, some had ham, and some had none and ran all the way home. Oops, I couldn't help myself with the little piggies reference. Anyway, I enjoyed one made with bacon but bypassed the others since I don't eat the other meats. It was delicious, for sure, and we finished the meal with gin.

-I returned to Neustadt an der Weinstrasse to meet my friends there. We hiked along the Weinstrasse and enjoyed the almond blossom festival.


  1. Tandem partners are a good idea. Speaking German will get easier, it can take me a while to warm up to the German conversation flow too.

  2. Genau. The other thing is that I'm listening and translating to myself in class so when I have to speak, it's like my brain has been delayed because I need to switch from listening/translating into thinking of a response and translating it into German. I look forward to the time when I can just listen and understand without doing some translating in my head first.

  3. That time will come, believe me! And you won't even notice when it happens. Just one day you'll think, "Wait, I don't think I translated that. No, I definitely didn't translate that! How long ago did I stop translating? OMG, I'm THERE!!" :-) And then the next day you'll be back to, "I totally did not understand a word of that." And so on it goes... I read novels in German and the newspaper. I speak German when I'm out. I sometimes talk to myself in German (don't tell anybody, though). And still sometimes while we're watching TV my husband will laugh at something and ask if I got that. "Nope. Not a bloody word." It's all part of this wonderful journey! Oh god, that sounds sappy.

  4. ^ :) Super cute! I still get the situation often where I know what each word in the sentence means, but the way it's arranged I have NO IDEA what the heck the darn thing means.

    I am to the point now where I can converse for an hour or so mostly in German. My tandem partner and I spend about 3 hours together and we'll code switch a lot between the two languages but we'll have long stints entirely in German. I've made a lot of progress in the last 6 months with speaking, so I need to be happy with that. My pronunciation is still lacking but I'm thrilled to be having conversations. I should focus more on the positive.