Sunday, 20 February 2011

Language School

I have realised that most of our posts are about life outside of study, whereas in reality a lot of our time at the moment is spent studying Spanish. Each morning, I go to language school and Neil goes in the afternoon. We are both taught for 3 hours 1-1, which is intense and tiring, but also enjoyable. We have just finished our fourth week of study, although I have been ill during that time. It feels like we still have a very long way to go as I am forever conjugating verbs in my head ot try to say the right thing, but I am encouraged when I think about how much we have learnt! We are normally able to make ourselves understood when we are out and about. I had a particularly funny experience when I was looking for popcorn in the supermarket. I wanted to ask where it was, but didn't know the Spanish, so had a long speech prepared where I asked where it was, and explained that it was food for when you watch films. It was a beautiful monologue, with actions and they understood me enough to take me to the right place. I then asked what was it called in Spanish, and they said 'popcorn.' I felt slightly foolish, but at least I got the popcorn!

Anyway, our language school is in the centre of Cusco and we take the bus there - as Neil has explained previously, that can be an adventure in itself,although people often take pity on me and squeeze up so I can sit down. The school is in San Blas, which is quite a cool part of the city, with a slight hippy feel. Here is Plaza San Blas, which is just around the corner. When the irregular verbs are getting too much, I love to walk around here and clear my head.

Our teachers are very patient with us, and I am geek as always, doing lots of homework. Sometimes, we go for walks to look around and practise Spanish. On Friday, my teacher Jimmy took me to a local market. I have included a couple of pictures, but didn't include all of the pictures of the meat stalls, in case people are a bit squeamish... cows tongues and hearts etc. Jimmy tells me that it is quite a delicacy here, but it is not something that I am used to.

One of my favourite things about Language School is the opportunity to chat with a Peruvian about life and culture here in Peru and in the UK. And now I can do that in Spanish - well Spanglish at least! We are going to be studying language for 8 and a half weeks - a third of the way through already!

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