Monday, January 12, 2009

Sunsets and Spanish

Another beautiful sunset last night!
I just love the colors in these photos.
You never know what kind of sunset there will be. Sometimes the sun just drops down below a cloud bank and, poof, it's all over. Other nights, the sun pops out from behind some clouds and puts on a spectacular display of colors, like last night.

We had a lovely day. A very full house at church yesterday morning. There is a group of mission/volunteers staying at the church's mission inn, so that adds quite a few people. It is always so interesting to meet new people passing through or those who are spending some time helping out in some way. We met a young man from Arizona yesterday who was just here for a couple of weeks, helping to do some work on one of the member's home.

We also talked to Anna Smith about taking Spanish classes. She's a former ESL teacher from Canada, down here for a few years helping out at the clinic and in the colonia. There is such a need for these classes for those like us who want to help out in the community but lack necessary communication skills. She has several teachers lined up, 2 full-time teachers from the Sandy Bay Alternative School, 1 young native born lady with no former teaching experience, 1 young island lady with quite a bit of teaching experience, and she is matching them up with students, either one-on-one or in small groups. We are interested in a small group as is a young man volunteering at the orphanage for a few months. Anna just needs to find a fourth person for our group and we'll be ready to start lessons. Anna said that lessons would be tailored towards our needs, mine towards helping out in Ms. Peggy's clinic, so more emphasis on medical terms, etc. Each lesson will start with dialoguing and will incorporate real-life situations. Homework will include practicing these real-life exchanges, plus learning verb tenses, vocabulary, grammer, etc. I'm really excited about this because although we have the Rosetta Stone program as well as vocab flashcards, the Spanish spoken here is different in many ways and the people tend to cut off words, run them together, and of course, have their own slang, which makes it difficult to understand. Many of them have a lilting, island type of patoi that we just don't get.

Anna said it might also be helpful to just immerse myself by shadowing Ms. Peggy in the clinic as she interacts with patients, that I might pick up vocabulary more quickly. We'll see how the lessons go first. It's also helpful to practice as much as possible. We have some new friends from Canada, a former pastor and his wife, who recently moved here and who are also taking lessons and that may give us more practice opportunites.

It is a delightfully cool day today, 79 degrees currently (that is too cool!!), with rain off and on and humidity at 83 percent. Nice little breeze keeps it very comfortable. I'm so glad we built this house with the covered deck in the middle; we can still be outside regardless of the weather. So I'm sitting in my swing, reading, writing, chillin'.

1 comment:

  1. Jeanette, I wanted to let you know I am really enjoyihg reading your blog about life in Roatan. I worked with Don at Boeing and he started telling us about this place that we had never even heard of one day which piqued our interest. I am so glad you are writing a blog about your life there. It makes the dreary winter days up here more enjoyable for me at least! And let Don know, I'm sharing the blog url with anyone that asks about him! (Steve P. and Pat W. so far.)

    and the photos.......Thanks again for sharing your life.

    Tammy Bartner