Extraño Sudamerica y Castellano

I’ve had a visitor (Frances) since Sunday morning.  He’s the son of friends of my parents.  My father went to University with his father, then ended up a political refugee which became permanent when a shitty dictator came into power.  He’d married a french lady and escaped to france.  She learned the language so they raised their son speaking French and Spanish (Castellano) and since he’s european of course he speaks English unlike us lazy Americans.

My father had a dive buddy ready to take Frances out to go on a spearfishing trip but that dive buddy is a little immature and decided to go on an impromptu trip to Cabo instead so Frances ended up with no plans for a few days until my father’s other dive buddy can take him out (of course the weather is not looking like it’s going to cooperate at least for a couple more days this week).  Frances flew in Saturday night, stayed with my parents, then my mother dropped him off Sunday morning.

He’s a little younger than me but pretty mature nonetheless.  I’ve given him the run of my place (a key, access to whatever he needs like food, internet, bike, surfboard, etc…) and he’s stated more than once that he feels my area is like living in a movie.  It’s definitely a nice example of the typical American surfer/beach bum lifestyle.  He’s noticed how many people are down by the beach especially it being winter.  Sunday was a little chilly because of the wind but the sun was shining strongly and blue skies and beautiful girls around running their dogs down at the local dog beach.

He has a girlfriend back in France, but he’s definitely noticed how many attractive girls there are around here, how “sporty” of an area it is, and over the past couple of days both Maria, Rose, and other female friends.  We’ve had some discussions about my past blue pill experience (not in those terms) and now he understands a lot more why I’m just dating and not getting into anything serious for a while (or ever).  He’s not really red pill but has a decent head on his shoulders and I’ve been having a great time hanging out with him where I can.  I wish I had a couple days off work to go exploring the surrounding areas, museums, cities, etc… that are interesting to visitors (and anyone really).

The point of this post is that I’ve been speaking exponentially more Castellano (the dialect of Spanish that I know) with him the last couple of days than I do in a regular month or quarter.  I’ve REALLY been enjoying it as it’s been enough (especially Sunday) to be as close to immersed as possible and I’ve taken large strides in becoming more fluent again.  It’s fun because while his grasp is better than mine, we both understand more than we can speak and since we both speak a lot of another language normally, we’ll both forget words and it will stop us like a brick wall.  However, we’ve been understanding inherently what word the other is searching for in many cases and this makes the communication pretty free flowing.  It’s really nice.

A funny side effect is that I’ve switched at least partially to thinking in Castellano and accidentally speaking it to my friends, neighbors, roommate not thinking about the fact that they don’t speak any Spanish and aren’t really going to understand me.  This is how I was when I was a little kid.  I’d just respond in whatever language people spoke to me in, effortlessly switching between the two, not even having a grasp that there was such a thing as two different languages, but simply responding in kind and thinking in whatever language I was using at the time.

When I was a kid I could switch off a language and listen and HEAR what the language sounded like to people who didn’t speak it (mostly sounds, unable to make out all the specific breaks in words).  As someone who has lived in the USA for most of their lives, it’s quite a unique thing to be able to hear English as it sounds to someone who speaks/understands nearly zero English.  I think if I speak enough Spanish again I can probably do it again.  It was neat to do.  Or maybe I was really bored as a kid.

I miss South America, the culture, the food, the people, and especially the language.  There’s nothing wrong with English, but it’s nothing compared to a romance language.  They are just so much more eloquent and beautiful, there’s nearly no comparison.

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~ by aneroidocean on 02/19/2013.

2 Responses to “Extraño Sudamerica y Castellano”

  1. I’ve always wanted to visit south america. That’s on my list of places

  2. Agreed, but english is so much easier to use at work, everything is short and precise…. I’ve worked in French and it seems like every time i needed to write a formal letter, the letter would be twice as long as it needed to be. But the ladies love the sound of french rolling off my lips.

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