I wonder if anyone has made a New Year’s resolution to learn a new language? I admire any expats who make a determined effort to learn the language of their host country and are willing to try to avoid asking that embarrassing question “Do you speak English?” at every opportunity. After all, without a basic knowledge of the language, culture and customs, much of the new life that was hoped for will never be achieved. No, I am not talking about not seeking translation support when dealing with medical, legal and financial matters, where it is often important to seek professional assistance. I won’t pretend that learning a language is easy as one gets older; it is not, since learning a new language takes perseverance and effort.
This article has been withdrawn from this website as it has now been published in Barrie’s latest book, ´Letters from the Canary Islands and Spain’.
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