July 10, 2011

Spanish Adventures

I had a day of bravery this past Tuesday when I joined the Medina family for some transplanting. I can hardly say that I speak un poco Spanish, much less enough to communicate the complications that transplanter teams encounter. Which plants go first? Are these two leafy things the same or different? Is the seat too high or low? Enough water? Add the authentic accent and colloquial phrases, and suddenly the texts books fail me. I gave Ted a deer-in-headlights look at lunch that day when he said, “Como Esta?” My brain was too tired from trying to decipher the unknown that I barely recognized a question I did know.

Martin takes on a fatherly role when helping me entiendar the questions even though he doesn’t know enough English to fully rescue our language situation. We usually end up laughing and shrugging. Martin's father is the “grammar police” who makes sure my muchos cebollas are correctly amended to muchas. It’s nice to have the help, so I don’t have to sound primitive forever. The others are so cordial. Daren tells me that a few weeks on the transplanter with them and I’d practically be fluent, but I’m not sure I believe him. Anybody ever seen My Fair Lady?

In my defense, let me say that I can readily say (in Spanish) every vegetable we grow and whether it’s bunched, boxed, bagged or crated! And I’m an awesome speller when I write all those words. Someone once called me a senorita (no name mentioned, so he retains his honor), and I knew that I should have been a senora because I'm married. So, all in all, I am making progress. If you have any pointers or ideas for my Spanish learning process, please let me know!

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