Upon my arrival to Bordeaux, France I had the same reaction to the French language that I believe most Americans hold, “French is beautiful” and “ The French Language must be Fun”. My mind was changed very quickly. Yes the language still sounds beautiful but once I began to study it I was shown that it does not match English grammar standards even remotely. I was having trouble communicating simple everyday task to everyone around me. In French words can sound so similar it is very complicated to tell them apart when a native is talking. Pile that on top of French culture being different from my southern roots where people are really nice and helpful and here where people don’t really look at each other made it even harder. I really wanted to learn the language so I signed up for free classes. Given that I didn’t speak the language and the classes are all in French was a challenge but thankfully I got the hang of it. I finally feel confident enough to put my Google translator away and go each day like normal. The greatest compliment you can receive as a southern boy with a southern accent is when a native French speaker tell you that your French accent is “très bonne”. Even though that might not seem like a lot it shows me that my hardwork is paying off because compliments are not given easy here. If French is something you are thinking about I encourage you, but know that you might want to work on the speed that you speak. That would have help me out tremendously.