For as long as I can remember I have loved the sound of the French language. Because of that, and because I’ve long nurtured a dream of going to Paris, I ignored everyone who told me to take Spanish (I grew up in Southern California so that would seem to be a reasonable suggestion) and chose French instead. I started taking French in 9th grade and continued throughout high school. In college I skipped the first two courses offered and then took Intermediate French I and II. Sounds impressive, right? And like I should be able to speak it fairly well, right? Uh, not so much. There was a time I could read and write French reasonably well. I was the top French student in high school and had “A”s in my college courses. Unfortunately I never had a teacher who was totally fluent so my accent and auditory comprehension were never great. Still, I had a good foundation and if I had had the opportunity to continue my study of the language I think I could have done well.
It’s now been more years than I care to admit since my last French class and I’ve forgotten so much of what I once knew. Oh, I can still read a French menu, which is ever-so-handy here in rural Oklahoma. Let’s see…how do you say, “chicken fried steak” in French? And I remember a fair amount of basic vocabulary and common phrases. But I would be hard-pressed to write a coherent paragraph or short essay anymore.
I was thinking about taking a class at our local university but apparently they are having a hard time finding a French teacher right now. I do have several French textbooks which I could start reviewing and I have the demo cd of the Rosetta Stone computer language program. What I seem to be lacking is the self-discipline necessary to study a language on my own for any length of time. Still, hope springs eternal and I have high hopes that a hefty dose of self-discipline will descend from on high and in no time at all I will be parlez-vous-ing Français like a native. And since we are currently in fantasy land, I will also become slim and gorgeous like all those iconic French women. Hey, it could happen.