Episode 8: All About You
Welcome back to Season 1 of Language Stories. This time things are all about you. Why "you"? As we've been travelling through Latin America and heading into a new Spanish-speaking country every few weeks, I've realised something. Something really simple. Something really important. Something I don't really know how to do. I arrive in a new Spanish-speaking country and don't know how to address YOU. You in Spanish isn't always easy, and that's why we're dedicating the podcast of this...
Episode 7: Unbelizable!
Welcome back to Season 1 of Language Stories. We're back for the second half of this season and this time, we're speaking English...and a few more languages in Belize. Why Belize? I was really excited to visit Belize. After my time in Costa Rica a decade before, Central America had always had a draw for me as a really accessible region in terms of geography and language. Yet, despite the rest of the region speaking Spanish primarily, Belize officially speaks English. Of course, this is...
Episode 6: You Know a Word in Nahuatl
When we were in Cuba, just before Hurricane Irma struck, our casa particular owner said to us we can use the internet. It was weird. We’d gone almost two weeks with zero wifi due to it being a complicated and expensive and time-consuming process in Cuba, and all of a sudden we were told we could connect to her wifi for free?! Wow! We were instantly inundated with news of the impending hurricane, which was fine, because we knew from chatting with locals on the street that it was coming....
Episode 5: Maya Isn't Dead
What happens when history tells us a civilisation has vanished? Disappeared. Gone. Kapoof. Naturally, we assume that the languages spoken by those civilisations is gone too, right? That all citizens and descendants took them to the grave, leaving only some etchings at ruins of once great cities, which leaves lots of work for people who like deciphering stuff to decipher the pieces of the language spoken by these people. And of course, the juicy gory details of history are the ones we hear...
Episode 4: Star Wars: A Language Story
Welcome to episode 4 of Language Stories. This time we’re in Tikal, Guatemala and we’re talking all things...Star Wars. In particular the languages of Star Wars. Why Star Wars languages? Because the new Star Wars film, The Last Jedi, is out today of course! It seemed like a great chance to take a look at a bit of an anomaly in the constructed fictional languages world. And besides, it’s Hollywood, right? So it still fits with the series topic of The Americas. Ha! Why Tikal? Because I’m...
Episode 3: Montreal: Beyond Bilingual
Welcome to episode three of Language Stories! This time we visit Montreal, a city that goes beyond the bilingual expectations you might have. Why Montreal? When I was studying for my French A level, my French was going through a bit of an identity crisis. My Spanish was set. I just found it more endearing, more interesting, and more exotic and new. Whereas French? Well, French had been part of my life for much longer, and I’d been to France lots of times. It no longer excited me in the...
Episode 2: Chinatown in Havana
It's always nice to have a little familiarity when you're travelling somewhere new. Something you can rely on to give you that creature comfort. Sometimes, weirdly perhaps, Chinatowns are that thing. But not so much the Chinatown in Havana, Cuba. This is episode two of Language Stories. Why Cuba? As we were planning our trip back home in the UK, I spent some time browsing Skyscanner and dreaming about all the places we could head next after our time in Quebec, Canada. There were lots of...