Because Sandra asked..
I was fizzing over with blogging fervour last night and perhaps I should wait for that feeling of compulsion again- but I have laptopping rights right now and I ought not waste them. I've been assured by Sandra my endlessly generous Bosnian teacher (I know she reads this now so I have to be nice ;) ) that there are people who remember me and have some lingering curiosity about my fate.
Firstly, loathe as I am to disappoint her and the rest of the gang u UMLIP-u Bosnian has had to take a backseat since I started my new job this week. Although I was still emotionally attached enough to buy the big blue BCS Grammar and Sociolinguistic Commentary book last week and walk around with it like it was my best friend for a few days.. or like it was a hunk of mouldy bread and I was the hallucinating hungry guy from this video:
But I've been made to realise that what's needed now is Arabic, Italian, Spanish and French in that order- and unfortunately that is an order which inversely correlates with my ability. I'm interviewing people who have no English skills at all- they can only join this Pre-ESOL course if they can't string together basic sentences or read or write, but at the same time I need to ask them about their work experience, skills, education, job search activities and all that jazz. So you see having a few Lingua Franca under my belt would be pretty handy. It's exciting for me though- I have a reason to research random languages like Tgrinya and Kurdish. Kurdish is really intriguing actually- I'm only at a wikipedia level of knowledge at this point but it seems like the name Kurdish is just a convenient label for outsiders- it's more like a dialect continuum with three main dialects, and the language policies of the countries with Kurdish regions vary from total repression in Turkey and Syria, to official state language in Iraq. Apparently Turkey even bans naming children using Kurdish consonants that don't exist in the Turkish alphabet...
Anyway it's really amazing to have a job talking with real people as opposed to crazy angry people on the other end of a phone line. I see the Sarajevo gig as being more like a working holiday- done for love not money- so it doesn't count. I've never had a non-soul-destroying job in Manchester before but we'll see how I feel in a month or two though. The only tiresome thing is having to handwrite all these documents- it feels so stone age in this era of copy-and-paste.
I plan to get a bike with my first paycheck so I can halt this slide back into an indolent, indulgent lifestyle and start riding to work. I remain undeterred by my experience on Monday which left me with slowly blackening bruises, including a particulary ugly gash over my right knee which makes sujood a painful position. Well the short version is that my first ride in years involved me being chased around the street by an eight year old girl I'd never met before and ended abruptly with me having to scrape myself and my dignity off the pavement and retire, cowed, to the house.
I've been learning lots about papercutting in the last week- helping MD make her final project with pop outs and other exciting things. It's been highly satisfying watching old Osama's face slide into a photo of baby Sophia and her proud Somali momma on her JIHAD page... There was a whole photoshoot thing in Slimey's wild garden as well which was fun, cause I got to embody different sides to Duale's cool - although MD quickly turned into an alarmingly diva photographer. Conversation was a little difficult, as whenever I opened my mouth to comment, I was quickly shtummed with a shocked "why is the model speaking??" and "why does the model have an opinion??!"
I would link to her blog with photos but I can't be selective about who clicks through.. I liked the rugged look most though- even if it caused me to channel my inner axe-murderer according to Slimey and the Dude..
Speaking of those two I have to give them props for showing me this awesomeness:
This is how they do it- London Style...