Tuesday, September 4, 2007

huevos verdes con jamon

We had a pretty great Labor Day weekend. Chip took time off! We attempted to sleep in! We went to Bumbershoot, the annual Seattle music festival (where we saw Crowded House and The Shins)! We ate a lot! And – we went to a bookstore. Tomorrow I’m going to bring you the gritty details of the weekend of leisure, but for today, I’m going to let you in on a little experiment that we’re trying.

We’d like The Bean to learn to speak Spanish. Chip is fluent in it. I, ever the gringo white girl, am not. Yes, I grew up in the Southern California, where the Spanish language is quite literally spoken on every corner. Being my contrary self, of course I took French—four years of it! And a couple semesters in college. I can sort of say a few words of this beautiful language, and sadly, nothing else. I am a pathetic American who speaks the English good. (HA!) We’re hoping we can spare The Bean from my ugly state by starting him or her off early. Obviously, I’m no help in this endeavor. Chip spends time talking to The Bean each day, having these great conversations that I can’t understand. In the early weeks, it was cool – and I’d just lay there, thinking my own thoughts, listening to the rumbling familiarity of Chip’s voice. Now I’ve started to get a little …nervous. I’m giving my husband and child an opportunity TO TALK ABOUT ME – WHEN I’M IN THE SAME ROOM. BECAUSE I WON’T UNDERSTAND A BLINKING WORD.

I don’t quite have grand plans of enrolling in a language course quite yet. However, I took the first step yesterday when we were at the bookstore. I bought a book in Spanish. Of which I will read. To The Bean. And hopefully (through osmosis?) learn some of the language my own self. I had about five books to choose from – one of them a dictionary (no, not quite there yet), El Gato En El Sombrero, and Donde Viven Los Monstruos. (Look them up – I DARE YOU.) After some deliberation, I chose Huevos Verdes Con Jamon.

The entire way home, I was shuffling through the book, me and Juan Ramon. With the repetition and my horrible pronunciation, I’m surprised Chip could even drive the car, he was laughing so hard. I trust, if nothing else, that this book will enable me to clearly explain to my waiter, the next time we're in a mexican restaurant, that I clearly don't want huevos verdes - regardless of where or how they'd like to serve them to me.

1 comment:

The Wife said...

Hilarious! Where the Wild things are and the Cat in the Hat! I too am a gringa but I sooooo know my children's lit! Well, and what with going to church in spanish for months you do kind of pick it up. Chris still laughs histerically when I speak it, but when I hear it I can generally understand. And you will too--don't worry. Just perk up your ears when you hear "Mama, mamacita, or mamita" and then bellow at them, "ARE YOU TAKING MY NAME IN VAIN DOWN THERE?" It'll scare the pants off of them and also, it will be very very funny. I dare you.