Survival Phrases and Greetings

Language learning is moving full speed ahead.  I spend two hours each morning with a Wolof language helper and then several hours each afternoon visiting very patient and understanding village women practicing what I am learning.  I also provide much comic entertainment for them.  Of course we started with greetings.  The Wolof have a very elaborate greeting process, we then moved on to other “survival phrases”.  In most language learning you would learn things like: Where is the bathroom?  I can’t speak the language? Directions, etc.  The first questions the Wolof women asked me and I needed to have answers for are: How is my compound? How is America? How is my family? Do you have a husband? Have you ever had a husband? Why don’t you have a husband? Do you want my husband or son as your husband? Why don’t you want them? Do you have children? Do you want children / do you want my child?  and of course How old are you?  Since my language learning is very practical and everyone expects those answers these are the first things I learned to say.  In response to the husband questions another wonderful single missionary and my language helper shared some of their responses:  “God has not willed me a husband” and when offered a husband “I don’t love him!”.  That gets some good laughs and usually gets me out of those questions for a little bit.  We will be adding some new topics this week and hopefully expanding the conversations a little.  Pray for ears to hear the language and a mouth to make the sounds.  

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