How Learning English changed my Life.

I was starting my first year of high school when my mum told me it was time to learn English. At that time I was living in Peru, a Spanish speaking country where schools teach English but lets say it is more like a basic language holiday lesson. My mum said that learning English would be very important for my future, so I started having intensive English lessons in a British Institute outside high school.

My English lessons were always very early morning and I would practically run to catch the bus to make it in time from the institute to the high school. I had a special authorization from the school head teacher to arrive a bit late. It didn’t took very long for my classmates to realize that I was good at English and they would ask me for help when doing homework or when having a test.

In the 80’s we didn’t have Internet so I had penpals in order to practice English writing. My first penpal was a girl from Kent, England. We used to exchange postcards, stamps and posters of music idols. She would be the one who sent me a magazine page with the picture of Rick Astley and he would become my idol, I learnt the lyrics of all his songs and still now I am a big fan. In Peru I didn’t listen to radio stations in Spanish and instead I preferred to listen to radio stations that played songs in English, that actually helped me a lot into understanding the language. On Saturday afternoons I used to spend time at the British Institute library where I was fascinated with the books in architecture and history.

Years later I traveled for the first time to the United States where I struggled a bit because I was speaking ‘British’ and at times people would tell me I was saying things wrong (when I wasn’t) and it didn’t bothered me. American and British English have different vocabulary and also sometimes grammar could be different. For example: A ‘butty’ in British is a sandwich, the ‘petrol station’ in America is the gas station, and British go to the ‘toilet’ not to the bathroom. A very useful book about how to speak British is called ‘The very Best Of British’ by Mike Etherington, this book is a must read if you come to visit England.

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Definitely speaking another language helped me with job opportunities. At a very young age I worked for important companies speaking English and Spanish, met new people who became great friends, and suddenly I found myself travelling to many places for work and pleasure. My love life was not good and it wasn’t going anywhere, so I forgot about ‘normal’ dating and decided to look for love in a very different way. It was time to find Mr Right so one day I subscribed to an Online Dating site. I was very serious about it despite one or two people who thought I was doing something really crazy. There was something special and sexy about flirting in another language, the long distance issue was not important and that is how I met my husband.

I think it is never too late to learn a language, actually I learnt Italian a few years ago and I have been thinking for a while about starting Japanese lessons. Learning languages open doors leading to opportunities in life and I truly believe it can even change people destiny.

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A date with my husband and Dirty Soul

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The Beatleweek in Liverpool is a must event for all Beatles fans. With many bands from the UK and around the world coming to perform in the city it is a huge celebration. I was especially waiting for Dirty Soul, a Peruvian Beatles Tribute band. They came for the very first to Liverpool last year and I am a big fan. The band already has many followers in the UK, and many like me have been waiting to see them again in Beatleweek 2015. Dirty Soul won the contest as the ‘Best Latin American Band in 2013 in Argentina and also Carmen Calle won the best drummer award.

I have been following Dirty Soul via their Facebook page and via The Cavern Club web site, so I knew they were invited to participate in the Beatleweek this year. They are special to me because they are from my homeland and I have promised myself to see them every time they come to Liverpool. I was looking forward to go to see them with my husband but because of work he wasn’t sure about coming with me.

Finally it was Wednesday afternoon, I made plans to leave work early and just before leaving the office my husband texted me. He was on his way to Liverpool as he left work early too, that made me very happy as we were going to have a ‘Beatles Date’ with Dirty Soul. We arrived to the Cavern Pub a bit early and I had the opportunity to greet the members of the band. I was feeling a bit shy to approach them because they were busy getting ready for their performance.

Dirty Soul performed for about one hour, with people of all ages dancing and singing along. The Cavern Pub became a ‘tardis’ with Dirty Soul, they have the music power in them, the Beatlemania is alive, and thanks to them we had a unique Beatles experience. I remember my husband whispering in my ear: ‘Wow they are amazing’.

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I could not leave without greeting Carmen Calle in person, she is the drum player in the band and I waited patiently for her after the show, as I wanted to say hi and have a picture taken with her. She is a lovely pretty lady and has many followers herself. I loved the tshirt she was wearing, it said : ‘Yes, I am the drummer, yes I am a woman’.

Thank you very much to Dirty Soul for bringing rock and roll and happiness to this side of the world. You are definitely ‘The Peruvian Beatles Ambassadors’, great musicians with great hearts. It meant a lot to me to see you again and my husband is already a fan too!, many thanks guys, you are fabulous. I am sure you will be back to Liverpool, so see you again soon!!.

A 70 Year Old Girl

 

My mum at Penrhyn Castle, North Wales.

My mum at Penrhyn Castle, North Wales.

It has been a while since writing in my blog, and this is because my mum was visiting England and we spent quality time together, she is not just my mum she is a good friend too.

This is the third time my mum visits England, she is in her 70’s with a bit of health issues but nothing to worry about. It takes more than 14 hours the flight between Peru and the UK but she is used to it now. She is an adventurous girl, a good traveller and she isn’t scared of the long haul flight but she always carries her rosary.

She doesn’t usually travel with dad, and she doesn’t say that she misses him but when she speaks over the phone with him, I can guess by the tone of her voice that she really misses him. My dad isn’t a frequent flyer as my mum, he says that is because he doesn’t speak English and that is the reason why he isn’t interested in travelling abroad. I’m in the process of making him change his mind.

My mum learnt English when she was a teenager in Peru, but she hasn’t practice the language in years. She understands what is going on around her when she is here, tries to read the newspapers or magazines with my help but she struggles when talking to others. It was interesting to see her trying to speak to my mother in law, it was more like a ‘spanglish’ conversation, so funny, and somehow they understood each other. My mother in law and mum are friends and that makes me happy.

We went for a walk to Liverpool city centre and she was telling me about her memories in the 60’s with the Beatles fever. She said ‘Sweetheart, the fans would scream like lunatics and some of them would faint of excitement!’. We also went to Wales as she loves the castles, we visited Penrhyn Castle and when we were walking in the castle gardens she said: ‘ If a castle would be able to talk, can you imagine all the stories that it would tell?’. She loves trees, and she likes to hug them, she always says ‘ its good to hug a big tree, old trees are full of energy and that’s good for the human body’. She is catholic but she has her spiritual side too.

My mum is the one who gave me all her support when I met my husband, as a good friend she would always listen to me when telling her about my ‘cyberboyfriend’. She knew I met this guy on a Online Dating site, he lived in the UK, I was living in Peru, and at that time I would never imagine getting married with him. One day when I was deeply sad my mum said to me : ‘If he really loves you he will show it, and the distance between you and him won’t be a problem’. She was right.

It is always difficult to say good bye to mum, at the airport my heart breaks to see her leave. She has an English family in this side of the world, my husband and son love her to pieces and we are making sure she enjoys life. She says that thanks to us her dreams as a child about visiting England came true.

We love you mum!.

 

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