Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Loving language

From our kids we hear, in order of magnitude: English, Latin, French, Mandarin Chinese, Spanish, Hebrew, and German. It is truly delightful.

Last night, Vee and I went on a great run. (I really need to train harder if I'm ever going to be able to keep up with him.) As always, we pushed it at the end. Vee sprinted off into the distance. I sprinted, but in comparison to Vee, it look like a slow putt-putt (oh, comparisons, comparisons).

Completely out of breath, we stretched out a bit on the front steps. He said something like "Mi Mater, tu (something like Dear Mother, are you alright or will you die of lack of breath?)" All in fluent Latin without a pause of course. I understood him.

I replied with, "Ca va mon cher fils. Je te remerci pour avoir fait le bon tour. Tu cours comme un guepard. C'est merveleux." He understood me.

It took a moment's pause to realize that we're doing this all the time now. Vee will say, "Ita" and I know he's saying, "Yes", or more technically, "It is so", since those wacky Romans had no word for "Yes". (No, I'm not kidding.) I think, although I am not certain, that he is speaking Latin more than English on most days.

So, they say that communicating with teens is difficult... Um... I don't know how to answer that... Yes? No? It depends on what language you're speaking?

I hope they always love language as much as they do now. They play with words instead of toys. Cool, huh?