Mes amis. Je t'aime. Je vous demande, aimez les autres.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ferry's crossing the St. Lawrence
Well my friends it looks like today brings us to 11 days until Christmas! Nick and I finished our french classes for the Christmas break last Friday and we are really enjoying a little bit of a break from learning... now that doesn't mean that we get a break from french. Or else I would get back to class and have forgotten everything! We are still watching french TV and writing a journal in French tous les jours.
Petit Champlain

As for our language learning, it is going very well, Nick is starting to have deeper conversations and I am understand more and more which is very exciting. As we have been here learning french, there have been quite a few difficulties and more then just how to learn the language. We have found that there are actually quite a few missionaries that come through Quebec to learn french, mostly people from Canada and the States; and in Quebec there is only about 1% of the population are Christians so that means that the choice for the missionaries for what church to go to means you go to the church that you can find. That also means a lot of these churches have a missionary couple coming through about every year, which is not something that you would see in a Anglophone church. Because of all this, making friends has proved to be a little difficult.

For me at least when I find a friend that I really love and invest in that relationship, I would like that to continue, but in Quebec there are so many missionaries that come through and then just leave the next year, many people are hesitant about investing so much into a relationship with you because well they don't want you to leave; and the fact is losing a good friend hurts.  Then there is most importantly the language barrier, you understand nothing they are saying to you and they sure don't understand you and for a while this is really quite devastating. Something my teacher and I laugh often about, is that when you are learning a new language you feel like a baby...  I don't remember being a baby or learning English but I now have a new appreciation for all the 2-3 year olds out there when their parents don't understand them... No wonder they cry all the time... So for us this makes for short, sweet and simple conversations until your vocabulary has build up enough to have a good conversation...
Joy at her book signing

I was marveling at a little child one day about 5 years old who was speaking and understanding more french then I can, and it made me rather discouraged but someone reminded me very quickly that they have had 5 years of learning french and I have only had about 3 months... So I'm not doing to bad after all. Way to be patient Jocelyn!

So the hesitation of others to become quick friends with you is completely understandable and please do not get me wrong we have met some amazing people and now amazing friends and they have already expressed their sadness at our leaving in over 6 months. But its just not something that you think about... maybe its more something that has hit me, because I am loud and like to talk I can usually find some friends rather easily... but since I have been learning french I am neither loud or talkative... Shocking ... I know ...
Elyssa at her Concert

(I just take out my built up craziness on Nick when we get home)

So I say all of this of encourage you, if you find someone new, someone who does not speak the language very well... feel like a baby with them... befriend them... even it is just for a little while...

Because they probably feel




Date Night
Making Sushi
And a Ginger bread house

The Majestic, and The Wonderful Chateau Frontenac