July 31, 2009 | Russian

A French Detour

After being reminded how much my French sucks, I review.

I just got back from Brandt’s play (same one as before—A Night at the Kremlin). It was the fifth performance of a six-night run in the Midtown Theatre Festival.

While there I talked to the English playwright (briefly) and his Russian wife (less briefly). She and I spoke about various things, including Russian grammar—but in French. As I wrote previously, she doesn’t speak English. My French was terrible, and, although I did in fact understand most of what she said, I also did that thing I hate where I pretended I understood a few things I didn’t, because it got too embarrassing after a while to keep admitting incomprehension.

As soon as I got home, at around 11:00 p.m., I downloaded Pimsleur French through the New York Public Library (via their NetLibrary relationship) and began doing the first lesson of Pimsleur French II, which is the intermediate level. Brandt even did part of it with me. It was cute. I really do feel that my French is still stored somewhere in my head if I can just get past the formidable pronunciation hurdle. Those Rs are hard for me.

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