“You have a degree in Spanish? What do you do with that?”
Some days I don’t think a single thought or speak a single word in Spanish (unless you count “Dora.” I’m sure I say her name every day). My skills, compared to what they were seven or eight years ago, are definitely unpolished. However, there are days when being able to communicate in Spanish certainly comes in handy. Last Sunday was one of those days; today was another.
Last Sunday at church I bumped into a mom with two young children. I perceived that she was new, so I asked her a question to which she nodded and said “yes.” I asked her another question, and she once again nodded and said “yes.” However, this was one of those instances where saying yes actually means “I don’t have a clue what you are saying!” When I finally asked her in Spanish if she spoke Spanish, I could see the relieved look in her eyes. This time she enthusiastically said “sí.” Teresa and her husband, Francisco, are from Mexico and have four children (the older two were in Children’s Ministry at the time). Francisco works at a dairy farm just outside Mt. Pleasant, and Teresa stays home with the children (though she occasionally works at the farm, too). Francisco speaks a tiny bit of English; Teresa speaks none. I gave them my phone number and told them I hoped to see them again.
Yesterday they called needing a favor. Teresa needed to take her four-month-old boy to the pediatrician for a check up and immunizations. They do not have a car and wondered if I could help them out. So this morning Kayla, Madeline and I headed out to the farm to pick up Teresa and David (the baby). It was so nice talking to Teresa as we drove–definitely good practice for me! At the doctor’s office I helped translate between Teresa and the receptionist. (Thankfully the doctor spoke Spanish so I had a little break there). The receptionist even referred to me as the “translator” at one point–that felt so official! I’ve never been called a translator before.
After the appointment, we went to two banks to cash a check for Teresa (more translating there), and then I drove her home. I was so glad to help and had a great time. My heart was bubbling over with joy when we came home that I didn’t even mind how messy the house was (from being sort of busy the past few days; usually a messy house adds to my stress level).
On another note, my dryer stopped working this morning. Aaron has been trying to buy me a new washer and dryer for at least a year now, but I keep talking him out of it. I always say, “well, they’re working fine now, and besides, there are always good deals on that sort of thing.” Well, it turns out that there are not always good deals on that sort of thing! Perhaps the stores are waiting for the after-Thanksgiving sales! Oh well. I told Aaron I would just go to the laundromat for the next couple weeks if he can’t fix it.
I’m using up all my nap time, so I better get going. Just wanted to fill you in on the fun day I had. 🙂
Que bueno! Me alegro mucho de que hayas tenido la oportunidad de utilizar tu espanol!
Grandma Mayes says
Your generosity and kindness to Teresa brought tears to my eyes. You are a blessing to all that are touch by your love and kindness.
Andy Kerr says
Deborah did this quite a bit, until she was practically becoming a taxi/translator service. She started out doing it for a friend, and then her friend asked if a brother could come too, and then a sister, and then if they could make one more stop, and… when Deborah finally started saying “no,” she found she didn’t have a friend anymore. Just a word of caution.
Around here, if you set up a reasonable fee schedule, you could turn it into a fairly lucrative part-time job.