So once upon a time in high school, I took two years of Spanish. Many of my classmates strongly suspected that our teacher (whose last name was so comical that it would sound fabricated if I were to share it) did not actually speak the language, though; we spent a lot of time listening to cassettes while she dug in her ear with the cap of her pen, so there was very little actual speaking. The ear digging was so gross and distracting that I learned very little, despite managing to get A’s. At university, I gained literacy in the language (though not fluency). Thus, upon moving to Europe and surrounding myself with French speakers (who I may have mentioned are not too open about sharing their language with anyone other than fellow native speakers), I had an immediate desire to put some of my language skills to the test.
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