“To have another language is to possess a second soul.” -Charlemagne
People often ask, why German? Faced with that question because of my German BA degree, I can’t say I have the perfect answer and usually end up stuttering out a jumbled assortment of sentences. To their credit, it’s a great question. Spanish, Chinese, and Arabic all seem to leap to the front of useful languages to learn and besides that, what does one do with a language degree? However, language learning resonates in Charlemagne’s quote above “to possess a second soul.”
After traveling in Europe and returning home the “second soul” factor undoubtedly sits inside of me. There is a whole part of me that cannot communicate with English speakers around me because they cannot understand German. It is as if another whole person lives inside of me and only on rare occasions does she come out. It may sound discouraging, but the depth of understanding and empathy that I have developed for the German culture would lead me to major in German all over again – even knowing that I would be asked an infinite number of times “why German.”
When one travels, in the States or abroad, they are confronted with an array of backgrounds, interests, sites, languages, and styles. We often roof them under the term culture. On this blog, I endeavor to share part of my second soul and the cultures around us through posts and photos that my husband Tory and I have taken in the places that we have lived or visited.