I signed up for the Language Exchange Partner program on campus to be paired up with an Egyptian person to practice Arabic with. I really like my partner! She is an sweet girl from a small town near the Nile. She was quite nervous when we first met. She told me that, unlike the other student’s who came from wealthy backgrounds and could afford to go to international schools, she’d never studied in English. Thus, it was a challenge for her to go from learning completely in Arabic to taking classes completely in English! Her Englih was waaay better than my Arabic though.
She’d studied English as a second language in highschool while I only had 2 weeks of Arabic under my belt. Anyhow, I enjoyed the exchange immensely! I’d realized that my Modern Standard Arabic (foosa) was improving at a quicker pace than my Egyptian Colloquial Arabic (Armaya) thus it’s importnt to me to start speaking regularly in Armaya. While MSA is important for reading and writing, no one really speaks it in conversation so its restricting.
Also, after the past few bad experiences, I was subconciously limiting my interaction with people off campus but that’s not the way to learn a language! I have to jump in head first! I was happy to talk to my language partner. I was afraid that she may be impatient with me as I stumbled through the basics but she was happy to speak slowly and write new words down for me. I’m even more motivated to practice Armaya after hearing how good her English is! Yay, I made a friend!!
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to the bakery. Since Iearning the word for bread (kobz) , I like to test out my skills on the baker down the street lol