Duolingo: One Angry Owl

I have foregone many a day without practice. Late in the evenings, a chill goes down my spine. A feeling as though I’m being watched and an impending dread looms. I hear noises shuffle about in the darkness and remember that I have yet to complete my lessons. My phone buzzes but there is no response.

If you’ve been with this blog for a while, you are aware of my love for travel and languages. So it may come as a surprise that I have not been practicing. It shames me to utter such words. I have bursts of inspiration to practice and then nothing. No French, No Spanish, No German. On the flip side, I’ve been speaking Spanish at work. So there is some practice. Recently, there’s been a change in my life and with it comes new motivations and plans. With no debt, I am free to travel and explore. I am [now] This week I’ll be turning 29 and this means the window on doing a holiday working visa is closing. If all goes well, I’ll be living in New Zealand in 2023. If things go really well, I’ll live in Ireland by the time I turn 30. The year beyond I hope to spend a year in Japan to teach English.

It’s The perfect time

I have talked very little about my current life. I have given updates here and there but for the most part have keep relatively quiet. Right now I am working four jobs (Welcome Desk Associate, Event Planning Assistant, Rock Climbing Instructor, and Child Care Specialist); over the summer, I was a Summer Day Camp Counselor. This puts me in a relatively unique position for the twilight of my twenties where I am beholden to no company and my ties to one area over another are almost nonexistent. I am also single, which bodes well for travel. It’s a now or never sort of situation, where things seem to just line up. If I work in a foreign country I am more or less in a spot where I can be highly adaptable with my work experience.

What does this Have to Do with an Angry Owl?

I’ve decided to pick up Japanese again with this 3 year plan. New Zealand and Ireland I need not worry about the language as they speak English over there. Japan I’d feel more at home knowing the language. This last month has been decent thus far with my language endeavors. Off and on as I work my way out of gold league and back to more competitive ranks in Duolingo. So now I have a less Angry, more disappointed owl.

Life Dictates Motivation

Part of the issue I have is motivation. I am a practical man and also very much a planner. I seem to have a proclivity for language and am lucky in the sense that languages fascinate me. Most would not even attempt to learn another language but I love it. My assessment this last year has been looking into proficiency. It is one thing to appreciate language, it’s another to understand and hold conversation. It wasn’t until I started speaking Spanish at work that I realized I can be quite proud of all I’ve accomplished. It is not perfect but more often than not there is recognition in the eyes of those I speak with.

A Hostel of a Time

Quite recently, I was up in Seattle for my old College Roommates wedding. While there, I realized Airbnb and Hotels were ridiculously expensive. So I opted for a hostel, which I haven’t done since Germany! It was there I met a few Danish girls and a German couple. This had been the first time I’ve spoken German with native speakers since I left 5 years ago. They were impressed so surely Duo will have mercy on my soul!

A Little help from a friend

Out of the blue, one of my old co-workers reached out to me on Duolingo! I started learning Japanese and apparently he is doing the same! It’s a new experience for me to have a language learning buddy that is in the same boat as I am! Duolingo has quite recently added missions and I’m feeling pretty motivated to complete those as a way to earn extra experience. It’s a fun time in my language journey and between Spanish, Latin, German, Japanese, and French I think I have a pretty good base.


And that’s it! I’ve been wanting to talk about travel once again for a while now! With my language habits I figured now would be as good a time as any! As I learn more Japanese I’m sure I’ll have more to say but for now it’ll be grouped in with my other languages! Cheers and I hope everyone continues to learn and grow!

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