As for a foreign language that I want to learn? Right now, because I have collected a ton of family records from Mexico and Spain, I could use some intensive lessons but having bilingual friends comes in handy. Scott is fluent in Pawn Shop Spanish and I was incredulous when I first saw him breaking down taxes percentages and interest rates for his clients COMPLETELY in Spanish. And he learned it all from work! I can’t even do math in English, let alone out loud in Spanish.
Then, there’s Yiddish. My Jewish grandparents never spoke it. Not a word of it. They were Jewish by bloodline, very American and not at all “Jewy” I was very confused when I appeared at the shul for my first day of Sunday School. I never heard of anything Jewish or any religion before then.
It was my great grandparents that spoke Yiddish to my mom as she grew up. My mom used/ uses some of the expressions and I caught on . Again, Its my Scott who can speak it and was raised with it. His family, aunts, uncles and cousins from both sides all lived close by as he grew up and then, he worked alongside his uncle and cousin and their assorted relatives in the Pawn Shop. He picked up a lot more Yiddish from them . The charm of Yiddish is the appropriate sound of the word for the definition. “You got some shmutz on your shoes” or “I gotta schlep the kids to soccer”. “ That cake looks delicious, May I have a little nosh?” I thought I heard all the best words and then, Scott taught me some more. Some women swoon at a British or European accent but not me. I’ll take Scotto slinging pawn shop Spanish in one breath then watch him spring into Yiddish in the next. Oooooey!