Four long years, Cynthia and I have studied Spanish in Singapore at Las Lilas School. Over Whatsapp, one classmate mentioned that he is considering to drop our class and join another one. One that is not as taxing as our advance level. Another classmate reminded us that she too is leaving because her student visa is expiring. She needs to go home. This thought has lingered in my mind for quite some time. And I have discussed this with Cynthia. So, I followed the cue and mentioned that we too have decided to end our Spanish studying journey. One classmate typed in Whatsapp, “Is this the end of an era?”
I suppose the answer is no. There is no reason not to continue learning, outside a classroom setting. I feel that, for quite some time, I have hit the plateau. My passion seems to have deflated a little, when I am not getting as much from the 2 hours lesson as I used to. There is an increased slowness in trying to comprehend the course materials during the class. It is like a running marathon. If you are not fit enough, after a while, you would simply walk and then, stop. Linguistic ability is never my strength. Having said that, I am most delighted to make it to this far.
To that, I thank my teachers at Las Lilas. You are the most cheerful, knowledgeable, patience, and encouraging ones. I also thank my classmates. What a fun bunch you are. And I thank my wife Cynthia for supporting me throughout the journey. All the real time translation in whispers. No, I won’t forget.
So what’ next?
Ten weeks ago, at the end of the 10-lesson course, I asked around the table to see if we were continuing. One said, “What are we going to do if we are not?” Cynthia and I found it rather amusing. Indeed, for the last 4 years, every Tuesday we devote 2 hours learning Spanish. Our dinner has always been a mad rush. By the time we are home, it is ten o’clock. This Tuesday, after we bid our farewell to our classmates and to Amelia, our beloved Spanish teacher, Cynthia asked me in private, “What are we going to do on Tuesday?”
I don’t know. I miss making music. That seems like eons in the past. Come to think on it, that question never pops up in my head. I can always find something else to do. Enough time we have spent learning Spanish inside a classroom. It is time to take what we have learned and have fun with the real world. Watch some Spanish YouTube. Read some Spanish news. Chit-chat with Spanish chicas, or chicos.