Here is a celebration in this new land! I completed a level of intensive language training! Hooray! On Sept. 26th so just two weeks ago today, I completed level A2.1 in German after four weeks of all morning study and learning. I talked just a little bit about this last week in my post. I had a fabulous instructor and an excellent class. I had heard that our instructor was teaching the next level so I promptly signed up for A2.2. We have one more month here before we are away for all of November and half of December and I want to learn more. I would love to become proficient while I am here and I feel like its important to learn the language or at least try a little of where I live. There are all sorts of expat opinions about this by the way…another topic for another day. The A2.2 class started the day after I completed A2.1. At the last class it was revealed that it wouldn’t be the same instructor and I was the only one from our class.
I got ready for school on Thursday morning, my second first day of school in two months, and nervously made my walk to school. In my head, I was reciting all the introduction stuff because that always happens on the first day.
Hallo…Ich bin Courtney. Ich komme aus Portland. And on and on….
And as I posted last week, it didn’t work for me. The new instructor wasn’t my style and after giving it the ol two class time try and much discussion and gnashing of teeth with Ana, I dropped the class.
But I didn’t to give up this German roll I found myself on. I checked school after school and I had missed each entry point and the next would be in November. That won’t work….
Until I stumbled upon a new school and the timeframe works and it started on Tuesday and it’s a morning intensive…
Sure, it’s a bus ride away and would take me 20 more minutes than before to get to school and sure it’s two hours earlier in the day.
Let’s do it.
So yesterday morning I got up much earlier than before and with even more nervousness, I prepped myself for the third first day of school in two months. I walked through a part of the hood that I don’t normally to hop on the bus and where I got off, I didn’t know anything about the location. I walked through a new part of a new hood to me to get there and with my greatest breath and courage, I walked through the doors. This school started as an Italian magazine for Berlin. They decided to teach Italian and German on top of that and is now mostly a language school but with all Italian instructors (teaching German) and mostly Italian students who have moved here and are learning German like me.
When you know its going to work you know. It works so far. I am excited about it. But there are some major differences I am noticing…
- In a place with mostly Italian culture, it is a different kind of order and it is definitely more relaxed than the school run by Americans and Germans.
- In both days, the class has definitely not started on time and the break takes much longer and includes espresso for sure.
- I am the only American in the class and probably in the 4 classes that meet each morning.
- I have never heard until now an Italian accent speaking German. And I have never been in a room (besides when I have been in Italy) where the default languages are Spanish and Italian and not English until now.
- The walk to and from this place is opening me up to see different things again, new perspectives, a different part of town and a new way to see me in it. It’s interesting.
On top of that, I am glad that I took the route I took to get here. I was really lamenting dropping the class. What if I couldn’t find a good fit? What if I have to wait until February to continue? And yet here we are and it is much better than I could have thought and I am glad I listened to my gut and my being in order to get to this place. Yes, it is taking adjustment to scheduling and rhythms but it will work out for this time and place. This is yet another place to say….check in with yourself and take the next best step.