Language, language

We have managed to get a hold of Rosetta Stone’s Russian Level 1.
I was pretty excited, because it’s a language that I’ve always wanted to check out, and the language that Boo has expressed an interest in studying for his high school foreign language requirement. When I told Moose how lucky we were to have gotten it for free his reaction left much to be desired.
“Russian? What the hell is Boo gonna do with Russian? We live in California, shouldn’t he learn Spanish?”
Perhaps…
Perhaps he should learn the Spanish spoken in Mexico.
Unfortunately, the Spanish taught in most American schools is the Spanish spoken in Spain. Which, believe it or not, is quite a bit different.
The Spanish teacher at Boo’s school is actually closer to the mark. She teaches the Spanish spoken in Costa Rica.
I went to private school as a child, and took Spanish from Kindergarten through 5th grade.
In middle school we lived in South Carolina and my mother and grandfather pushed me to take French.
The most obvious argument was “It’s such a beautiful language”.
The most obnoxious argument was “There are more Spanish speakers on Welfare than French speakers”…
Yeah, I still don’t get that one.
I tried to argue the point that Mexico was very close and Spanish would probably be the better language. I was told that there were plenty of French speakers in our area.
In the end, I was forbidden to take Spanish and so began my journey into French, which continued into high school.
The day after I turned 19 I boarded a plane for Southern California…
Where there are thousands of Spanish speakers.
So when Moose had that reaction to Boo wanting to learn Russian I stopped him in his tracks.
We don’t own a crystal ball, we don’t know where Boo will go in his future or who he’ll interact with.
He may very well end up visiting Russia or marrying into a Russian speaking family.
He might end up collaborating with an artist from Russia at some point…or he might be the interesting guy at parties who can speak Russian.
Or, he might come back to me in 10-20 years and say “Ya know mom…I really wish I’d taken Spanish in high school.”
We don’t know what the future brings, but I do know that if my kids want to learn a language that isn’t “mainstream”…well then so be it.
If it awakens a global conscience within them, and helps them understand that though we may be from different countries we share one planet…
Well then so be it.

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