Apr 01 2011

“Habla español?” You bet I do!

Two and a half years ago, we were planning our move to Costa Rica and I spoke almost no Spanish. I knew that I wanted to learn, that my days would be fuller if I could communicate in the language of the land. So I looked at my options and selected Visual Link Spanish. I considered Rosetta Stone but, frankly, Visual Link Spanish was significantly less expensive, so I thought I would give it a try. Besides, I was able to try the free Spanish lessons they offered, and I thought that they were fun and easy to follow.

Now, after living in Costa Rica for two years, I can truly say that Visual Link Spanish provided a great foundation for learning and living in the Spanish language. Early on, I was able to engage in basic conversations with Ticos and experienced first hand the thrill of speaking in another language. I also enjoyed the smiles of appreciation I received from those I tried to communicate with. Even if I didn’t get the words perfect each time, it was okay; it meant a lot to them that I made the effort.

Of course, living in the culture has also helped my Spanish improve.  I’m constantly reading billboards, signs, newspaper headlines…Spanish is all around me, and that is a huge help.  I’ve also taken some private lessons from Johann at Green Mountain Academy here in San Ramon in order to improve my grammar and add to the verb tenses I can use, and I’m getting ready to buy some of the advanced courses that Visual Link Spanish offers.

All in all, learning some Spanish and being able to communicate, even in a basic way, has enriched my experience.  It makes me feel more a part of our town and this culture.  And I have to admit, I love it when a Tico compliments me on my Spanish.  How cool is that!

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