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Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Back to school (for the 3rd time...)

Ahhh.. The school bus. Mind you, if you caught one of these at least there would be a sporting chance of not making it!

I've heard it said that teachers make the worst students. Spot on. I'm now three hours into my Portuguese for idiot musicians course, and I have to say its going to take some time before I go native.

My benevolent employer pays for me to undergo this weekly humiliation, in the hope that someday I might just be able to stand on my own two feet without needing to cry for help before I do so much as pick up the phone. My students are immaculately bilingual. My Brazilian colleagues switch from one language to the next as easily as a crazy bus driver changes lanes in rush hour. It is most definitely time to step it up.

So my post-carnival resolution is to make a daily effort with it. I've got an app - I've got the program that encourages you to talk to the laptop like a senseless div. I've got a teacher! - And most of all I've got anyone in this fair city that wants to give me the time of day (not that i'd have a bloody clue what they were giving me if they did).

The first lesson was a hoot. Armed with the address an little more than than the ability to order beer after beer, I headed to Ipanema where my rendezvous was to be said tutor's 5th floor apartment. Now, Ipanema is a touch more swanky than where we live, so my reckoning was that this teacher must me doing something right.

Problem no 1. I get as far as the intercom entry and totally fail to communicate with the gate keeper. He hangs up on my shitness at least 3 times before coming out of the building to tell me to piss of in person. I resorted to pen and paper - he went to phone my guru, and in a flash it was all sweetness and light again. He showed me to the lift and, to coin M People, I was movin' on up.

And the doors opened. And my life changed. I was invited in (in Portuguese), asked to take a seat (in Portuguese) and talked at (in Portuguese) for the remaining hour or so. The only thing the whole experience was lacking was a really bright light shining in my eyes and a big meathead in the background stepping forward from time to time to punch me in the face.

You know what? I kinda liked it. I now know how to name most of the items in my school bag.

I might give it a week or two before I join the local debating society.

Yes, there is homework. And yes, I do it. In the pub, 10 minutes before its due. I really should have a word with myself. Somethings really ought to change.

Tchau for now.

Try one of these....

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