“I should really start speaking more Swedish.”
“How long are you staying for?”
“I leave in January.”
“… Well, you’ll have to start soon!”
Swedish lessons drawing to a close
That was the conversation I had with a corridor-mate while I was making dinner this evening. I find myself with only one more Swedish language lesson before my exams, and I can’t help but feel a little sad about it. There’s been a certain camaraderie that I’ve associated with the Swedish course, more than I’ve had with any of my previous academic endeavors. I’ve said it before in this blog, and I’ll say it again: I’ve really enjoyed language learning! Though I find it frustrating at times, this exchange has really kindled a fascination for foreign languages that I’d never really had before.
I feel like I’ve learned quite a lot of Swedish. When I’m reading and writing in the language, I’m constantly surprised with how much I understand, and how much I am comfortable writing down… Yet while speaking and listening, I really struggle. I think that this is probably natural when approaching language from a classroom setting!
Continuing with Swedish?
The real question in my head about language is: do I try and keep learning Swedish? I’m really not sure… The thing is that I really like the Swedish language, but it’s not exactly a ‘global’ language. That said, there isn’t really a more global language than English, but I desperately don’t want to fall back into being content with one language!
So, after some thought, I’ve decided that I will not keep learning Swedish. Shock horror! Though, that is not to say that I will not try to keep using it. I intend to join the ESN in Southampton upon my return, and hope to keep my Swedish from going rusty by trying to speak with exchange students in my own country… we’ll have to see how that goes.
Which language will I learn?
If I’m not going to be content with one language, and I’m not going to try to learn Swedish to fluency… Which language is going to fill that need?
On this exchange, I have met a lot of Germans. In fact, it would have been hard not to, they’re everywhere! Listening to them speak and hearing about their country has made me feel that this is a good language to try. It makes sense from an engineering perspective too, since Germany is one of the largest industrial economies in Europe. I also know people in the UK who have learned German as a foreign language so I reckon that, all things considered, I could do much worse than German!
That said, we will see how I feel about language learning when I’m back in Britain juggling all of the commitments I have there…