Tuesday, March 10, 2009

si o no?

8:15am I met with my student who rescheduled from yesterday to today. He was in the U.S. last week to give a presentation. He said when he was in the U.S. he noticed the recession. He said he found incredible prices on clothing and not many people where out at the restaurants. The reason for his meeting in the U.S. was to cut costs.

9:15am I was finished teaching, so I quickly flipped through the pages of my 'Guia "T"' (bus bible) to see which bus would take me home. It's so much easier to use the Guit T when you know the names of streets. Proudly, within seconds, I knew which bus would take me home.

9:30am I met my conversation exchange friend in my favorite cafe. Since she doesn't speak much English and she is a waitress I thought we'd talk about food (in English). I brought a U.S. takeout menu along with me, so we had something to talk about. We spoke a lot of English for the first hour, but always resorting to Spanish to explain. She needed to leave early to let her boyfriend in her apartment, so she invited me over for mate. On the way to her apartment and while we were in her apartment we spoke only Spanish. It seems like once I get rolling I can have a conversation, it's just the 'get rolling' part that is difficult to do. My second go at mate was better. I'm starting to warm up to the national drink of Argentina.

1pm I met with my Spanish tutor for an hour and a half. We continued with reflexive verbs (there are more than I thought existed) and reciprocal verbs which when written looks the same as reflexive verbs (ex. They "hugged each other").

I took a short nap, ate a little and headed back out the door at 5pm to go observe an English class at an institute that can offer me classes (the 20 peso place). I was not impressed. I sat in on a conversation class with a native English speaker who answered all questions with "si" (yes) and "bueno" (good) and "mas o menos" (so so). Seriously? She's teaching English AND is a native English speaker and told me she doesn't speak Spanish so WHY is she answering questions with Spanish words? Her student called her out on it. He said "do you mean yes or si?". She laughed it off, said it's a bad habit and then said it's her class and proceeded to answer in si and bueno.

no bueno.

After a week and four days of living in my new apartment I ventured in the other bedroom to 'test' out the TV. (I'm not a TV person, that's why it's taken me so long) But before 'testing' the TV, I went for my Argentine addiction that I can't seem to kick (helado) (pronounced: ah-lado). 9 pesos and choosing 3 flavors later I came back to my apartment and watched a Spanish version of the Simpsons. I was surprised at how much I was able to understand (but not even 50%, but more than I thought)

What good end to the day. Ice cream and some TV.

Money spent today
1.10 bus to teach
1.10 bus return
10 pesos - coffee & 3 medialunas during convo.exchange
1.10 bus to friends apt.
1.10 bus home
30 pesos - 1.5 hours of Spanish lessons
1.10 subte to observe spanglish teacher
1.10 subte return
100 pesos - I found some suitable black shoes
9 pesos - heaven (ice cream)
155.60 pesos ($44.45)


Debora said...

Hi there, I was wondering where you found your Spanish tutor & how much does she charge you? Also, your Spanish/English exchange friend...how did you find her? I desparately need to learn Spainsh & don't just want to sign up for an expensive Spanish course which I have done. I am looking for a tutor or a basic conversation group. Any ideas? Thank you! Debora

P.S. I follow your blog from time to time & love your observations. I relate to so many of them.

yillabean said...

Hi Debora. I found my Spanish tutor (who I really find helpful) through the baexpats.org website. If you would like to email me, I can give you her name and phone number (I don't feel comfortable writing it on the web) yillabean@gmail.com

I met two really nice Argentine girls through the website conversationexchange.com It's a hit or miss website. I met many people, but I've made friends with just two.

There is also a free conversation class on Wednesdays at 3:30 at LV studio in Palermo Hollywood. It's worth checking out. http://www.lvstudioweb.com/

Good Luck