So, what’s new with me? Well, I finally started the pre-semester German course this most recent Monday. Since it’s only a four week class, I have it everyday from 2:15pm to 5:30pm. I really don’t mind it though because a) the professor only speaks in German, so it is listening practice for three hours everyday and b) the class is something around which I can plan my day, as opposed to having another month off before classes start.
One of the things I have come to appreciate more this past week is simply how amazing it is that we (humans) can even speak a language at all! While growing up, the only spoken language that was ever used frequently (in my house, etc) was English. And, given that I took Latin in high school, the only exposure I’ve had with respect to language comprehension (spoken) is still only English (of course, ignoring that time I had to take Spanish in 8th grade). So, I’ve never really “experienced” anything but English. I think that what I am trying to get at is that if I’m asked a question in English, I immediately know how to respond to the question. I might have to think about the specifics of what to say, but I immediately recognize the “type” of the question being asked and know the “type” of answer that I have to give. Now, I’m not claiming this to be anything revolutionary; It’s just something that I haven’t even thought to consider before.
And, while I’m in a new country with new people, I sometimes feel lost without my occasional splurge in that which is math! To those who don’t know, I honestly believe I’m obsessed about learning math. I can (and have) literally sat and read a textbook for more than 6 and a half hours straight. There are disadvantages to this, one being that you start to go crazy (ha. just kidding). While I’ve slowed down considerably from the last couple months (…there are many other things to do and I’m in Europe!), I must be honest and say that since coming to Germany, I’ve taken the occasional break from the world and decided to read about Galois theory instead!