Geography – boring with a capital B!

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Last week, whilst watching University Challenge – a regular event in our house – I was once again frustrated by the geography questions.  I have never heard of most of the obscure places that crop up in this quiz and it made me think about how on earth anyone would know the answers to these questions…..

When I did geography at school, it was incredibly boring.  Nothing to do with different countries, just boring, boring lessons on crop rotation.  Admittedly I stopped doing geography in the third year, when we got to choose our options, so I didn’t do it for that long. Actually, thinking back, I didn’t get an option, I was thrown out of the class for being disruptive (difficult to believe, I know).  Maybe if I had seen it through to the end I would have learned more about different places instead of how to irrigate a field (a piece of information I have never found I needed).

Anyway, I still don’t know how people come to know all this.   Those students on Uni Challenge can’t all have taken geography at A level – I mean, who would want to take geography at any level anyway, it’s so boring? – but, somehow, they know these random things about random places.   KD didn’t do geography A level and HE knows.  So why don’t I?

I am considering investing in a globe of the world that I can have by me at all times so that, in a moment of boredom, I can discover some new place I have never heard of.

Then again I could just accept that geography is not my strong point and take up something far more useful, like knitting.

Mi Chiamo Flossie…

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Tonight, KD and I attended our first ‘Italian for Holidays’ evening class – the first of twelve (dodici) lessons.

I have been in and out of study for years as an adult, always to do with my career, but this was my first time back in a classroom learning something totally new to me since, well, I can’t remember when….I used to like languages at school but I haven’t done anything like this for years and years.

It was fun actually and we now know how to say our names, ask someone else what theirs is (formally and informally!) as well as a range of greetings – oh, and how to count to twenty (venti)!

I was reminded of the ‘language lab’ we had when I was at school in the early seventies – very high tech at the time – where we sat ourselves down with headphones in our little individual booths and learned French or German.  It was so boring, and I used to use the time to have a nap usually, but I can still remember French so it must have sunk in!  (I’ve forgotten all my German though but I don’t remember learning that in the language booths, I just remember a formidable woman with wonky eyes teaching us the old fashioned way).

Anyway, being back in the classroom learning something other than the academic stuff I’ve had to concentrate on the past few years was fun, not least because there isn’t an exam at the end of it, we are doing it purely for pleasure.

Next week we will be learning how to book a hotel room in Italian.  Which is a bit silly because we’ve already booked ours….

Ciao!!