Thursday, August 21, 2008

la lengua

tengo la lengua bien cansada por haber estado hablando todo el dia!

whew!!! I have been talking non-stop all day....
tonight was open-house at our school. well actually it was all day, in three different sessions.
it might be hard to imagine that just talking all day could make a person tired, but ....it can! especially, for me, speaking spanish all day, and filling out the same forms for people all day.
as long as i have worked in the schools i have wondered why in the world don't they have a person (or several) type this info. out and print off labels??? helllooooo???
these parents are filling out the EXACT SAME INFORMATION 12 times.
that would probably be too expensive...hmmmm

the very last person i helped was a dad of a little girl going to kindergarten. it was the sweetest thing. he was dirty, he had been working all day. he was illiterate, almost. he had a piece of notebook paper in his wallet with all of his important information on it. he had to take it out and find each piece of information as i asked for it, but since he could not read, he had to look long and hard, and of course i was not a big help, b/c i did not know which phone number/address/whatever was the one he was looking for. so i just sat there patiently waiting for him to find the right thing. i did not want him to feel embarrassed either. when i asked him a question, or maybe i told him, when i looked at his license, "you know, they are going to make you show proofs of residency" (every school does this for every student to make sure they are going to school in the correct school district) he got very defensive, as if i was accusing him of something, and then i felt sorry for him--he must have to be defensive all the time, (of course I was not, i was just trying to clue him in).
then we had to talk about the bus. i had to tell the bus rules etc. this is a translation into English of what I tell the parents, "the principal is very serious about the bus. your child has to sit there quietly, no eating, no drinking, no getting up or throwing anything out windows. If your child misbehaves he/she will get kicked off the bus."
when he had to sign that form he did a very fancy signature (more on this in a minute) i guess I sounded very serious during that part. hee hee.

signatures: I learned, in Spain, that in some places a signature does not just mean writing your name in cursive letters. In spain when a person signs their name it looked like to me they wrote their name in cursive, and then scribbled all over it. it is almost an art form. here we just write the name in cursive. some people do it in a hurry, but most are legible.
So when this man did the fancy scribble thing, it tickled me.

He was just so sweet/pitiful/hard-working....it almost (my eyes are watering) makes me cry! :)

Okay, I am over-tired now...off to watch some beach volleyball...that big beach volleyball tournament we have been watching for the past two weeks!

4 comments:

Moore, Moore, Moore! said...

Your story about that sweet dad did bring tears to my eyes :) I wish more people could see things from our perspective...

Melissa and Pete said...

I didn't realize you worked with the bilingual children, although I know you speak Spanish!

My little nephew Jett (almost 10 months), his other grandma is bilingual and she is talking to him in Spanish so he can learn too! He loves it, he is so cute. I hope he will speak both!

Susan said...

melissa, I hope he will speak both too! how cool would it be to grow up and just learn two languages, naturally?
Now, we do have a county commissioner here who thinks that exposure to another language is just an abomination--of course all of jesus' children speak good ole n.c. ENGLISH! god forbid any of us have any exposure to another language--our amerkinness might leak right out of our bodies!!! ooooooo...que idiota!

Bethany said...

Good story! I'm glad you are an "ambassador of Eastern" for these families :)