About a year ago I realized that the number of Spanish speakers visiting our store in Blandon was increasing. I had forgotten almost all of the Spanish I had learned in high school. I couldn’t understand or talk to people in my store, and I didn’t like it. I started studying Spanish.
Why should I learn Spanish? There are many reasons. Two are obvious: Spanish speakers will be able to get things they want in my store, and the store will make money from them. These reasons are important; others are much more important. If we communicate, we all win.
As the owner of a music store, I have seen that, when people connect with others through music, barriers fall. Music is a common language that makes us more human to each other. With music we relax and smile.
When Spanish is the common language, it also makes us more human to each other. Even if I can only say a little in Spanish or ask in Spanish for someone to speak more slowly, people know that I care enough to try. It makes a huge difference. It creates a place where we begin to share experiences, cultures, and hopes.
I confirm that theory every time I speak in Spanish with Spanish speakers at my store. Their shoulders and faces relax. They smile. I recognize the reaction. It’s the same thing I see with music. They feel safe and valued. Although imperfect, it seems my Spanish is music to their ears. That’s the most important reason for me to learn Spanish.
Mike and Paula