I have made some interesting mistakes in my time. In Brittany once, I confidently translated a sign at farm/zoo type place as “ giraffes brush their teeth with dead dogs”, similarly, in Provence I could not work out why the “ bull fight was going to take place in the swimming pool”….still haven’t worked that one out.Apart from the present tense, whichever past tense it is when you conjugate with avoir or etre, and the basic future tense, I have ignored things like the imperfect, the conditional, past historic and anything to do with subjunctives. So, I have decided, it is time for some progress to be made.
Today, I sat in the bar in the village, drinking my morning coffee and I read a local paper.
As I sat there, I suddenly realised I was really reading it. I almost laughed out loud when I read the write up of the Jazz club concert I went to last week. I think the journalist went to a different concert and got her reports mixed up. I did not think it was “ une nuit magique” Anyway, I also found out that there is to be a medieval festival in the next village next Sunday, that a singing group from another nearby village is inviting people to come along and join, what Hollande has been saying about the euro crisis and what the French hopes are for Wimbledon and for the up and coming Tour de France.
This was a real leap forward. I know it is easier to understand the written word than when you are hearing someone speak very quickly….but I recognised that I was reading and understanding whole articles, not just fragments of vocabulary that I was able to string together to make some sense.
So….next, improve vocab……listen to the radio, and talk to more people. I am confident within my limitations….I have never minded if I get it wrong, and I do not spend ages searching for the correct grammatical construction…..but I now understand that I must listen to more people and talk to them for any real improvement to take place.
|Excuse moi, je voudrais parler avec vous.|
The residents of Caunes had better watch out. I am going to corner them in conversations whenever I get the chance.