So, I am officially studying Japanese. Im not very good, but at least, in my head, I can communicate basic things like, I see a dog and I like coffee. I have a private tutor and we meet once a week for about an hour and a half. Ive been taking lessons since June, and if you were to eavesdrop on our lessons, you would think that I was a Japanese genius or something. I have absolutely no problems (okay, that may be exaggerating a little) understanding and talking with my teacher. But, put me in the real world, and Im a moron. Ive been thinking about it, and I think its because Keiko, my teacher, is arguably the best Japanese teacher in the world!
When we started, I had absolutely no Japanese knowledge, and it didnt fluster her at all. She must have the most patience in the world because she never gets frustrated when I cant understand something, or if I just stare at her like shes from another planet. She will just stop, and re-explain whatever shes saying in another way until I get it. And she teaches an entire lesson with a smile on her face. I really dont know how she manages it. I mean, sometimes it hard for me to teach a low-level student for 40 minutes, so I cant imagine how she does it. And its not just me that thinks this way. Another of her students is my friend, and he thinks that shes an excellent teacher as well.
So, at least once a week, I feel like a proficient Japanese speaker. And I can only hope that sometimes my students feel as good about their English skills as I do about my Japanese skills after my lesson.