Melanie and I are in San Pedro La Laguna, Guatemala now, one week into intensive Spanish lessons. Maybe we should have done this before the Camino Frances, or the Caminho Portugues, or the Camino Ignaciano but better late than never, no? We did take a mini Spanish class in Singapore a few years ago but it barely got us through the hello’s and other greetings. The lessons we are doing now are serious. I’ve just counted and in the first week, what I have learned includes 180 verbs and their conjugations in present tense, a great shortcut for all their future tenses and a workable shortcut for past tense. I am having conversations with my teacher in Spanish but we are still at the 33rpm speed. I’m not aiming for fluency, just enough to get around in Spanish speaking countries.
If you have the time (and frequent flier miles), Guatemala is the cheapest place to get very good Spanish lessons that we could find. We just have to remember to lisp when we get to Spain. I will put in a plug here for the Co-operativa School in San Pedro La Laguna. One-on-one classes with experienced teachers, plus an en-suite room in a nearby home-stay with full board for two of us cost US$430 per week.
This view of the school gardens shows some of the classrooms but the better ones are hidden deep in the foliage.