Hello from your new editor

by Kimberly on Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Hello to everyone!

You may have already seen a post of mine as I was so excited about the World Cup that I failed to present myself first.

My name is Kimberly and I am an American who has been living and working in Salamanca, Spain for some time now. It is a long story, but basically I was an International Affairs and Spanish major who thought that studying abroad was a good idea to improve my Spanish - and so the story starts in 2002.

I remember that I chose Salamanca without a second thought, I do not remember why but I know that it was the right choice. The last thing my mom yelled at me as I walked out the door early in the morning to catch my flight was "DON'T FALL IN LOVE!!!!" and I said "I WON'T!!!!" Ha, little did I know.... :)

Thus began my year abroad in Salamanca, easily remembered as the best year of my life. I met my future husband (after years of going back and forth... again, long story) whom I married two years ago when I came to live in Salamanca definitively.

I come to don Quijote after having worked most recently in online advertising in another Salamancan company. My role here will be to post on the blog and respond to comments, adapt and write texts, and make sure the English communications go out without errors (or at least not noticable ones!! haha)

I am eager to hear from you, so try to keep my job exciting and post your questions or comments. I have traveled all over Spain, I know what it is like to learn Spanish from basically nothing, to live with a host family here, to live with Spaniards in a shared apartment, to find your own apartment, to travel, get lost and anything else you might want to know. I can give you tips about how to finance your trip and most of all encourage you to recognize that if you do not do it now, you probably never will!

I look forward to hearing from you and answering your questions!

Sincerely,

Kimberly


Keywords: Salamanca,Spain,travel in Spain,don Quijote,in-country language immersion,study abroad,live spanish in Salamanca

Comments

1 » Anonymous (on Wednesday, July 21, 2010) said:

Hi Kimberly,

I am living in Monterrey Mexico. My husbands work brought us here.

I have two grown children and three granddaughters.

I want to learn Spanish. My husband is from Mexico but he has never been much of a teacher. I am taking lessons with a girl I met here.

If you have any ideas for me please let me know.

Thanks for your story.

Hope

2 » Kim_Defrate (on Wednesday, July 28, 2010) said:

Hi Hope!!! Sorry for the delay in responding! How are you? Well, my advise would be to move to a country that speaks Spanish, but you already did!!! So my second advise would be to separate yourself from English speakers. I know it is hard, it is definitely easier said than done, but it is the best way to learn! Full immersion is a "sink or swim" type of situation, and if you think about it, this is how we learn our own language as well. As a child you have 2 choices, sink or swim.. so you learn. Well, the same goes with full immersion. Secondly, I think a really solid base of Spanish grammar and a good understanding of the verbs and how they are conjugated will really help! Don't worry too much about memorizing every conjugation, you will get that with practice and listening. However, I do think it is important to understand all the different verb forms. This well help you A LOT in understanding what is being said (an opinion or suggestion? A conditional sentance? Future, past? Today or yesterday?) In Spanish they use verb forms much more than in Engish and each verb form gives you information as to when, who, etc. So, if you have a good solid understanding of these forms, than you are ready to listen and to practice! On another note, I think it is important for you to understand the difficulty of "changing your language" with someone. My husband is Spanish and although I would love to speak to him in English, it is just really weird and uncomfortable to me. Our relationship started and continues in Spanish. How can I explain it? Well, I dunno, can you imagine talking to your mom or sister in Spanish? They may learn Spanish and you too, but the language of your relationship is in English. So I recommend that you separate yourself from all English influences that you possibly can. This could be difficult for awhile and kind of lonely, but within 6 months you will understand more Spanish than you would have ever thought and by 12 months you will be speaking quite well! GOOD LUCK! ¡buena suerte! Kim

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