I’ve always been immersed in the English language. Although I was born and raised in France where I lived till the age of 26 (before moving to Australia), my deep connection with the Anglo-Saxon world has been cemented by a series of life circumstances and events:
- As a child, I used to holiday in England every year with my family so my father, an English teacher, could sharpen and develop on his linguistic skills
- Like a lot of French 18 year-olds back then, I spent a ‘gap year’ in England working as an au pair
- My university studies focussed on English and Hispanic matters and included business, language and civilisation subjects with most of the lectures being delivered in English or Spanish
- I used to work in the international tourism industry, mainly as a long-haul flight attendant for Air France which meant speaking English most of the time
- I moved to Australia 27 years ago where I have established my life and French Facialist business.
I find being able to speak another language than French to be greatly enriching (sadly, my command of Spanish has now gone rusty!). Generally speaking, it makes me appreciate the world from a different cultural perspective which, as a result, encourages me to be more tolerant of others in general – what you take as gospel may not be part of someone else’s belief system. Anecdotally, practicing a foreign language has been a great way to keep my ego in check over the years. Flashback to the 80s when, in an English restaurant I ordered a ‘raped carrot salad’ (the literal translation of ‘carottes râpées’) instead of grated carrots. Awkward!
Do you speak another language? How has it enriched your life and perspective? Feel free to share your experience and leave a comment.