I have ventured into my fourth language class at Rice University (continuing education). I may have reached my saturation point! In an effort to expose myself to as much Spanish as I can before our 35th anniversary trip to Spain in May, I enrolled in Spanish 2. Last semester's Spanish 1 class was a kind and gentle introduction to Spanish. We plodded along learning the very basics and I kept up fairly well. I was not at the top of the class but I certainly wasn't at the bottom. I still can't say much except hello, how are you and I'm from.......and congugate a few verbs. I was moved up to the next level and decided "what the heck? I'll take it until we leave for Spain, at least I will be exposed to more Spanish and maybe it will help in our travels." "What was I thinking???"
I missed the first class, which was a big mistake. When I showed up to the second class I felt like I had entered the Spanish Twilight Zone! I think everyone else in the class studied Spanish in high school and college and are just taking this as a little refresher.... I feel like a non-mathematical kid stuck in Algebra 2, clueless! "What is everyone saying and why can't I understand them?" "No.... don't call on me! I have no clue what the question is, much less the answer!"
I will call my new professora, Senora Patear mi Culata. Every Tuesday and Thursday night I voluntarily show up to class and get my fanny kicked! Compared to my other language professors she is a slave driver. We have hours of homework every class. I diligently do my homework and still feel very unprepared when I get to class. She speaks rapid fire Spanish 90% of the class and I catch about 15% of what she is saying. The volume of vocabulary is staggering to say the least. It is like learning a foreign language! haha! I still get busted for using my French accent too, "Senora, that's a French accent! The "g" is pronounce "h" in Spanish." She teaches university Spanish classes as well as the Continuing Education classes and told us that we cover in 8 weeks what her other classes cover in 16. Thanks! I feel so much better/worse. She looked at me sympathetically after the last class and said, "Senora, is everything OK?" I told her my head was spinning and I feel at a distinct disadvantage having never studied Spanish before, unlike the rest of the class. She then surprised me and told me that she could tell I was "una persona intellegent" and assured me I was in the right level class. Whew! Now on to the hours of homework, so I don't get mi culata kicked on Tuesday!