My mother’s father, my grandfather, was French. He came over to the UK on his bike with a string of onions to sell, met my grandmother and never went back. They had two daughters, one of whom had me. It was a beautiful love story, really.
His heritage has all but been forgotten though, sadly. Despite having a French father my mother never became bilingual – he was out at work a lot and my grandmother didn’t speak French. She knows a little French, but not a lot, which means that we never became bilingual either. I studied it at school for a number of years, and the majority of our family holidays were spent in France when I was younger, but my grasp on the language was always tenuous at best and years of lack of practice have left me rusty to the point where I can remember a lot of names of items, but not the sentences around them.
Enter Duolingo, a language learning app/website that I stumbled across last year. Duolingo is awesome – I use it on my phone, mostly, and it does seem to be helping – my reading comprehension has shot way up (although my oral and written French still leaves a lot to be desired).
I hesitated for ages about putting this goal on my list because I am genuinely fearful that I will never complete it, that I am not smart enough to complete it. Eep. However, I’ve completed 19 of the 68 segments (that’s 27% for those of you who care), and I figured that probably means I am at least dedicated to trying, which is all you can ever really ask of yourself, right? So on the list it went. We’ll see how it goes. Wish me luck?
(Sidenote: if anyone wants to speak French with me, let me know! I could always use the practice :) )