As I probably have mentioned I speak French and enough Italian to get by (in Italy). I never had any intention of adding a third latin language to the previous two. As I told my sister who in high school was chosing between German and Spanish to add to her French and Italian, you will only get confused if you learn Spanish as well. She didn’t take my advice (of course, who does what his / her older siblings say??), and even though I still believe that my advice was very good… I, personally, don’t really have a choice nowadays, do I? With a Spanish boyfriend, in-laws who only speak Spanish and plans to move to Spain after our year in the Spanish-speaking island of Puerto Rico…
And for your information, I am soooo confused! For example, even though I concentrate hard on saying buenos dias, buenas tardes and buenas noches to the neighbours – every now and then, when I least expect it, a buona sera will leap out from my mouth! Argghhh…
I shouldn’t be complaining as it is thanks to my French and Italian that I understand as much as I do of Spanish, and because of those languages I am already learning the Spanish conjunctive after 4 lessons… but there are some draw-backs:
In French and Italian the word and is et / e – which is perfect for a beginner as you very often stumble and search for words, and while you do this, you can say ehhh… It doesn’t work in Spanish – and is y, which is not a “thinking noise” if you see what I mean.
In French you never (or hardly never) pronunce all the letters in a word – perfect when you are not sure of the conjugation of a verb! Who knows if it was a -ais or -ait or even a -aient ending you just used. Of course it makes it a little harder to write French, but who cares as long as you can speak it 😉
In Spanish and Italian you do pronunce all (or almost all) the letters in a word, so a) you have to be pretty sure how to spell a word b) know which conjugation you are using (especially as they don’t usually use a pronoun) before you can speak! So, if you don’t know how to exactly conjugate the verb, who knows who you are talking about (I, you, he / she, we, you or they??)!
This insistence to pronunce all the letters in a word is also not helping me when I try to guess a word in Spanish… I do it all the time, I will take a French or Italian word and try to pronunce it in Spanish! However, I never know how to end it – is it problemo, problema, probleme… [it is el problema – one of those words that is actually the same gender in all the 3 languages, always masculine even if it sounds feminine!]
Now you know how I “cheat” in languages and as I said, I shouldn’t really be complaining, but sometimes it gets frustrating 😦
I am feeling a little better today, but is still skipping my Spanish class tomorrow as well – don’t want to spread my awful cold / flu to the el / la profe*!
*) I now have two teachers so every lesson will be a surprise – who will be teaching me today?