But this entry is not about Le Melodrama Antique, but is about how ashamed I am by something that happened there. A good friend of mine, who was playing the piano that night, brought a French foreign exchange student with her and insisted that I speak with him. That's partially because I studied French pretty hardcore in highschool to the point where I actually lived with a French family for a bit my senior year in Le Puy. Since then, I haven't really studied french much but I remember at various parties if I got drunk enough and met someone else who studied French, we would have superficial conversations in the language.
But upon meeting this teenager, I was barely able to cobble together a "bonjour". I wanted to say, "It's a pleasure meeting you," but for some stupid reason I couldn't reason out in my brain how to say it. It reminds me how I knew a guy in college from the Philippines who would sometimes forget how to use his native tongue he had been surrounded by English for so long. Nonetheless, I felt like a complete jackass, for being so unable to make conversation with the Frenchman.
For a while, it was a dream of my best friend and I to compete on America's The Amazing Race. Having spent two and a half years in Ukraine she knows her pidgin Russian pretty well. Also, she used to be the president of the Spanish club back in high school. I claimed that I could get us around in Francophones, and I had a somewhat working knowledge of German. But if I can barely make polite conversation with a French highschool student, what does that say about my ability to circumnavigate the globe?
The lesson I've learned is to bone up on my French. I've discovered a couple of French podcasts that I'll listen to, and perhaps dive back into learning the language. If anyone has tips or pointers, please let me know. Au revoir!