No, not for Laurel. Matt and I began our first day of language classes at the Language Cultural Exchange (LCE) Center on Monday. Matt hasn’t had a first day of class in nearly 6 years and I haven’t had one in 11 years. To say I was nervous is an understatement.
We will spend 2 hours a day Monday through Friday in class, 2 hours speaking to native Indonesians, and 2 hours doing homework/studying. Each unit for class is 4 weeks long and the goal is to complete all 6 units by the end of the year.
After class on Monday Matt and I walked to a restaurant nearby our house called, My Burger Coffee. Minutes after we sat down a table of ladies came over and asked if we would take a photo with them. We ordered our food and I pulled out my class notebook and walked over to “interview” them for my homework. They were very gracious of my horrendous pronunciation and even exchanged phone numbers with me.
While I spoke to the table of ladies, Matt was swarmed with the other patrons in the restaurant. An hour later one of us had finally spoken to every patron in the place. And yet our food had not arrived yet. We looked through our class notes to find out how to say “We need to leave,” (Kami harus pergi) and get our food to go.
It was a humbling and exhilarating experience to speak with the people. Humbling because we know so little Indonesian yet exhilarating because while we know so little we can still communicate. The people were so excited to speak to us. I hope we can learn more, so we can listen better.
Please pray for our language learning. Pray that we study hard, practice much and learn to love the language.