For some odd reason I still remember the text book from my junior high French class. C'est Marie. Marie est blonde. Exciting stuff! That was eons before the many apps and online courses that make it easy to learn a new language from the comfort of your very own home.
First off, I tried Dutch. My husband learned to speak it as a 5-year-old expat back in the day, so I figured how hard could it be? As it turns out, it is hard. After a few days, I switched to Spanish, which was easier because a) I have more exposure to it and b) it's linguistically closer to French.
The Mango lessons are fun and quick. It's helpful to hear the pronunciations of native speakers, and I enjoyed the cultural tidbits thrown in. As I clicked through the screens, I could feel the rusty gears of the foreign language center in my brain coming unstuck, which was gratifying.
Learning a foreign language is a lot of work! (Thanks, Captain Obvious.) It requires much more investment than fifteen minutes a day--for me, anyway. After a mere seven days, I have a renewed respect for anyone who is multilingual.
Even though my Mango language study was fun and good for my brain, I just don't have the capacity for it right now. As a result, this week's Take It or Leave It is a regretful Leave It. With the possible exception of Pirate.