Last Thursday was my first day in German class at the community education center in Flensburg. I take the train from our town, which takes just 15 minutes. I am loving good public transportation! Then I have a 15-minute walk to get to the school. Class meets on Thursdays and Fridays, begininning at 8:15 and and ending at 12:15, with a 20-30 minute break.
I took a placement test to determine which course I should take, and the woman who gave the test just wasn't sure what to do with me. She ended up placing me in the higher of two levels that she was considering- that made me nervous! On Thursday, I nearly had a panic attack because it soon became clear that my classmates have far more knowledge than I do- both with vocabulary and grammar. I could just barely follow what was going on. I looked around and everyone else seemed to be doing just fine. That is SUCH a terrifying feeling! I left after that first session with a sick feeling in my stomach, thinking "Why does everything have to be so hard?"
But of course I went back again on Friday and, lo and behold, it went better! I spent some time talking with the teacher and she was very reassuring. When I was called on in class and struggled with the answer, both my classmates and the teacher helped me through it. And as far as I could tell, no one shot me dirty looks for being so remedial! I have to remember that this is not academia- I will not be graded and there is no final exam. This is just for me. I started to relax and learn. And I think this just might be fun!