Ah, finally…a time to blog! :)
I was so busy with work that I literally forgot that I have my very own space in cyberworld. But now that I’ve complied with all my deadlines, I can blog guilt-free!Yey!
Aside from work, there is something that really keeps me busy here…and that is learning French! I have heard so many things about the French people before I came here — the most common being, “The French are such snobs, if you speak English they won’t even look at you!”. But guess what, when I got here, my first impression was that the French are the most courteous people I’ve ever met! My neighbors greet me “bonjour” when I pass by them, the baker always says, “au revoir, bonne journée” when he hands me my pain au chocolat, and yeah, “s’il vous plaît” is in almost every sentence I hear. And about them being snobs, think of a reverse scenario…a French goes to an English-speaking country and starts asking directions in French…see what I mean? :)
I promised myself I’ll learn the French language for two reasons: first, out of respect for the French people because I am living in their country; second, because I want to be a multilingual Executive Assistant — and hopefully work for UNESCO or something like that. :wink:
Learning this language has been quite a journey for me. My solid foundation on the French basics courtesy of Alliance Française de Manille did wonders for me as a beginner. It pays to have a really good teacher in your foundation class, I tell you. I remember that my foundation course emphasized proper pronunciation, and learning how to say French words correctly gave me the motivation and confidence to say simple French sentences without turning red. :)
And then I moved on to studying on my own and bought Rocket French online for $99. They also have this free 6-day trial, 60-day money back guarantee, and it has, by far, the best reviews online so I didn’t think twice of asking my hubby to buy it for me. Hehe. I never did regret getting it. Rocket French is interactive, has fun games that facilitates learning, and it has audio features that helped me polish my pronunciation. It has worksheets, too, so you can actually test how much you’ve learned after each lesson. It was absolutely the best complement to my foundation courses at Alliance Française de Manille.
And my all-time favorite way to learn French is through Michel Thomas! This man is incredible! Our friend, Marc, gave us the French with Michel Thomas Foundation Course and I literally listen to it over and over again. I fall asleep with Michel Thomas in the background. I love it soooo much because within 30-minutes of listening to it, you will be able to form French sentences in your head quite easily, promise! He teaches you French in baby steps then builds up on it and surprise, surprise, you are able to form really long French sentences — on your own! Oh, I can go on and on about the Michel Thomas Learning Method because it has really helped me learn French faster than I could ever imagine. In fact, on my birthday, I think I will ask for the Michel Thomas Advance Course audio-book. :)
So there…so far, this has been my love affair with the French language. I hope that I would someday speak like a native. Hehehe! Just to have a little fun, I plan not to show up in my favorite bakery here for a couple of weeks…then, go back and surprise the friendly French baker who goes out of his way to accommodate my halting French. I will say 3-5 sentences in straight French, without blinking, and see if he gives me a free pain au chocolat. Bonne chance à moi!