I live in Japan, therefore, I have learned Japanese so that I can communicate with people around me. Communication is fairly necessary for life. I enjoy communicating with people just for fun, too, not only the times when it is necessary for life-like when the guy comes to check the smoke detectors every summer.
When I went to Peru I was reminded of what it was like when I first came to Japan! Yes, I studied Spanish in high school, for three years. That was, um, several years ago. I did remember the word for luggage because that was one of my sister's friend's favorite words and we said it all the time, rarely in context. But, I got to use it in context while in Peru!
Anyway, even though I have studied Spanish in the past, not much of what I learned would come out of my mouth. I could understand bits of things here and there, especially since some words in Spanish sound similar to English words-unlike Japanese where NOTHING sounds like English! (Okay, so they have borrowed some words from English, but escalator and ice cream don't come up in every day conversation all that much!) So, I sort of understood things, sometimes, but whenever I tried to say something in Spanish, Japanese came out of my mouth! Not so helpful!
What was helpful was that Compassion provided translators for us to aid in communication while we were in Peru. Our family group had a lovely translator named Patty.
Another translator who traveled with us was Fernando (on the right).
Our tour guide and main translator was Soledad (Here she is helping fry chicken! She did everything!).
And, the person who made it possible for me to communicate with Magally all day was Niko.
I am so glad that God gives the gift of languages! These people, and all of the others who traveled with us, have been given a gift from God and are using it for His glory.
I have a renewed desire to study Japanese more, now, so that when you come visit me in Japan I will be able to be an effective conduit for communication! Ask me how I am doing! Keep me accountable! And, most importantly, COME VISIT!