After six weeks of Danish lessons, I took my first test on Monday to see if I could move on to the next module. I admit it wasn’t great, but I thought parts of my written paper were pretty good. The teacher thought otherwise. When we had our ‘chat’ on Wednesday evening, it began with Karin telling me with a sad look on her face: “Well the test didn’t go so well”. Her advice? That I had to start all over again. In other words, I failed.
Although it doesn’t really matter, because I am voluntarily putting myself through this pain twice a week, with many more hours spent on homework, I was really disappointed. I didn’t show it to the other (brilliant) students – who all seem to speak hundreds of other languages. But inside I was mortified and felt completely humiliated. I’m not used to failing.
Of course, I could easily give up altogether. But as I am expecting Charlie, our three year old son, to start speaking Danish at his forest school, I have to keep going. So despite the desire to quit, I have just signed up for a new class. It begins next Tuesday – after a day’s work reporting for Al Jazeera. I’m not looking forward to it. But as the saying goes: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” I’m trying!