Friday, February 20, 2009

I'm stupid!

You know those moments you have when you leave a situation and think, "dangit, I should have said...." All those times at the mechanic's shop when you think you are being taken advantage of, or at the doctor's office when you think you are being treated like an unintelligent, overprotective mother. You just can't think of the right thing to say. Or even, those times when in a social setting your mouth gets blabbing and when you leave you think, "I sure hope they didn't think this, when I said that that because what I was really trying to say was this. What I should have said was..."

I have this regretful feeling very regularly here and for yet another reason. After having a...well, lets call it an interaction because it's definitely not a Spanish where I disjointingly throw some words together with terrible pronunciation and lots of pointing I often walk away thinking, "you idiot, you totally know how to say what you meant with much more clarity" and then I say what I should have said in my head.

For instance, this morning Caleb was suppose to bring a change of clothes to school because they were going to be playing with water. As the teachers were getting the boys out of the car I said to Caleb, "here are your clothes" and the teacher looked up and said, "Perdon?" I just smiled and sort of ignored the question although I know exactly what perdon means. I was just caught off guard. As I was driving home, I had the aforementioned head conversation. I should have said something like, "la ropa de Caleb para jugar con agua." This, I'm sure isn't the way a native would explain the clothes but she would have gotten the picture. My brain just cannot translate fast enough particularly when being stared at by someone with perfect understanding.

Aye carrumba!! There's nothing like a foreign language to make you feel stupid, all the time!


Sarah said...

No you're not! I think it is amazing you can even think of how you would say it at all... even if it is after the fact :) I bet you will get better and better the longer you're there. I think it is amazing to be pushing yourself that way!! And I have those moments all the time in my native language... ;)

Adam & Wendy said...

Stupid no, brave yes! I'm not sure I would be so willing to go out and try to communicate with others in a foreign language. I'm amazed at how much spanish you remember!

Anna said...

What great day trips and photos! Don't worry about wrong grammar--I'm sure everyone appreciates that you are trying and doing great! I say dumb things all the time in English!

stephanie said...

hi nicole! how fun to run into you in the blogworld. it's so small, isn't it? your boys are very darling. it sounds like you are having quite the adventure in mexico. i can't wait to read more!