I had my first meeting on a language exchange with a fellow learner. The beauty of the language exchange is that it is ただ (free – our favorite word here). Learning a language will probably cost you some money, but there’s no reason it has to break the bank.
The idea is that you meet up with someone who speaks the language you want to learn and who is learning a language that you speak. Then you communicate with each other. In this case, we used Skype.
The connection was not the greatest, but it did the job. We spent about 20 minutes. This time with him speaking in Japanese and me in English and a bit of Japanese. Next week we will meet again and will converse mostly in English. The time after that, it will be mostly in Japanese and on we go.
This is such a great idea that I think I will try to find someone else who can meet up with me in the middle of the week. I would like to get as much practice as possible, after all, and it is, let us not forget, ただ.
My Japanese tutor on Cafetalk happens to be female. Since males and females don’t always use the same words/constructions in Japanese, I will find guys who want to talk on the language exchange.
Today he was a little rushed for time, so we only spoke for a little bit, but it helped reinforce how much Japanese I don’t know. That’s okay. That isn’t discouraging at all. I haven’t been studying for very long, after all. This is going to be a great benefit, though, I can tell.
If, like me, you happen to live a place where there is pretty much no one talk to in Japanese, a language exchange is a boon. I’m going to go find someone else to talk to now.