Hola Senior! Como estas? Muy Bien! Un Gato en mi pantalones!
That’s about all the Spanish I knew. Don’t ask me where I learned the last sentence. I don’t quite remember, but it stuck.
Let’s not get ahead of ourselves though.
A couple months ago I was presented by my Family with the idea of traveling to Spain. Now, none of us knew Spanish, but we always loved to travel to new places. We figured we’d learn all we needed by picking up a phrase book, and listening to locals speak.
That sounded like a fine plan… for my family. I wanted to speak Spanish TO the locals and participate in conversations with people I would probably never see again… unless we hit it off so well I DID see them again! That would be the ultimate goal!
I wanted to learn Spanish as fluently as I could in less than the 4 months before the trip.
Now, I knew some Spanish… from grade school. Hola! was about all I remembered, and I’m sure that’s all 90% of students remember from their grade school educations. It’s a shame we don’t have a better system to teach us language… but that’s another story.
So I started scouring all over the internet for a source where I could learn Spanish. Perhaps a tutor could help me… so I looked that up. I found tutors to be, quite simply, very expensive. I couldn’t afford to spend much more at the time since we were saving up for the big vacation! That was the main event after all!
After researching tutors, I became a bit discouraged. Time was ticking at the unforgiving pace it always seems to move on. But I would not give up so easily!
I went back to the world wide web. There had to be something there that could help me… I mean this was the internet for crying out loud! The peak of our civilization! You can find anything on this great connection of servers! I’m sure someone had SOME information about learning Spanish fast… right?
After about 3 weeks I was going to give up. After all, how was I going to learn Spanish in a little over 3 months? I decided to spend one last day looking and that would be that. If I couldn’t find anything I’d drop the stressful search and get the phrase book and pick up all I could while I was there. I supposed that would be satisfactory at least… I mean I would be in Spain anyway, that was the main goal after all… see the world!
That last day I actually did find something though.
It claimed that I could learn Spanish in less than 3 months. What a coincidence I thought to myself… almost exactly how long I have.
At any rate, I continued to read the long sales letter, perhaps because of plain coincidence of the time, perhaps out of desperation, or perhaps out of real interest. I don’t really know, but I read it.
Once again, the letter promised that I would speak Spanish in 3 months if I took the course. There were tons of testimonials and convincing letters on the page….
But as quickly as my excitement came, it crashed. As I sat there at my computer, looking at quite possibly one of the only things that could help me, a terrible thought came to mind. Money. If tutors were that expensive, this would have to be completely out of my budget.
I had half a mind to just close the window right then and there to save myself getting more wound up only to be shot down at the price at the end.
But I didn’t. I continued reading. I read the entire page. I was hyped up. I was smiling. I was praying by some miracle that I could afford it. Maybe we could go to some less expensive hotels in Spain… I mean how value can you put on knowing Spanish for a trip to Spain? Absorbing the culture… speaking to locals, learning how they interact… understanding them speak! It sounded like euphoria to a traveler.
But I didn’t cut corners. It was much cheaper than I thought it would be.
So I bought it.
So I studied it and studied and studied. I listened and listened and listened. I even played games they had to learn! I played and played and played. Most importantly, however, I learned and learned and learned.
I was able to learn Spanish in 3 months. I was able to go to Spain and speak and understand almost every word they said! And when I didn’t understand, I could simply ask them in Spanish to tell me what they meant!
Along the way I made some friends in Spain. It was a blast. I remember one of them asked me how long I had been speaking Spanish. Apparently he was impressed with my skills. I told him about 3 months. He dropped his jaw and told me that that was the most amazing thing he’d probably ever heard in his life and he was going to go home and tell his kids about that one! I laughed to myself afterwards.
In the end, Spain was tons of fun. I made friends that I would have never been able to make had I not known Spanish. I was even able to teach my family a few things! They still mostly used the phrase book, so I ended up being the translator! It was a blast!
Not only did I have a blast in Spain being able to understand and speak Spanish to the natives… but now my family and I go to to a Spanish speaking country every few years!
It’s honestly one of the greatest assets I have ever had… being able to speak and understand a different language. Spanish is one of the largest and ever-growing languages out there.
Spanish rocks! Learn to speak it!