Learning a new language is one of those great activities that reduces the differences between people. It doesn’t matter what job you do, where you’re from or how much you earn; once you’re thrown together to grasp a new language, everyone’s in the same boat.
This occurred to me while reading one of a series of blog posts in The Guardian by writer Will Self. There’s something reassuring in reading about how a distinguished wordsmith experiences the same challenges in mastering another language (in his case, French) as everyone else.
I can definitely relate to this comment:
I’ve noticed how acutely geared to my general wellbeing my ability to speak French has become: on days when I’m rested and in good spirits, I feel like a saucy Maurice Chevalier in the making, but on down days I’m Antonin Artaud, brokenly raging in a straitjacket of received English locutions.
Some days, I feel as though I could talk forever and my Spanish friends seem to understand me. Other days, …