This afternoon I have helped Halima clean a little bit, and we have watched some crazy french tv. French Countdown is (unsurprisingly) really hard, but then they make it even harder by including a round that looks something like
it’s pretty scary. And they can always do it.
Then about an hour ago, one of Halima’s friends came over. I thought she was bringing an 18year old daughter who I was supposed to make friends with – fine. What she actually brought was a 16year old son. He seemed really nice, but not very talkative. Which was only made worse by Halima uttering the words which make any language student freeze up.
Let me explain. As language students, we are constantly being told by teachers, parents and friends to ‘Say something’. It is ridiculous to expect me to come out with a full and awesome sentence in another language on the spot, but people ask anyway. My instinctive reaction now, when people say ‘Go on, say something’ is to freeze up, which makes you look particularly ridiculous if
a) you speak 4 languages (and despite the fact that my Arabic is poor, I technically can speak it)
b) they are asking you to say something in your own language.
Which is what happened earlier. Halima wanted me to ask Umar something so he could show off his English, and I completely froze up and couldn’t say anything. On the upside, I was treated as special for the rest of the night and not expected to speak any Arabic which is good because I am so tired it would have come out as gibberish. I think I need to sort out my sleeping pattern somewhat.