Christmas in Macduff, Aberdeenshire

Merry Language Christmas

And it’s here! A day of cheer, jolliness, rest and restoration for many celebrating Christmas. And, perhaps for once, the languages take a back seat (for a very short while). That is, between the language learning book gifts (both old and brand new).

It’s a time (if you’ve time, between presents and Christmas dinner), to consume some Christmas content not only from home media, but from your target language countries. As a pre-Internet kid fascinated by languages, somehow managing to access TV or video from abroad seemed almost a Christmas miracle. These days, it’s as easy as opening a browser. Trying never to take that for granted, I’ve been dipping in and out of NRK‘s offerings over the holidays. It’s definitely a time to feel grateful for all the opportunities we have as learners today.

Likewise, 90s Rich would go to some lengths to procure foreign-language pop CDs, let alone any Christmas fare. It was either find a willing penpal, or travel to the country itself. Now? I can gorge to my heart’s content by flicking on Spotify. Spoilt for choice by it all, I’ve discovered gems that have taken their place comfortably and naturally next to Merry Christmas Everyone.

Christmas of Moments Past

And as a new year approaches, it’s time to take stock of all the language moments we’ve had over the past year. For me, it was a Brum full of languages that took the prize. But it’s also the little moments of spotting languages everywhere, like finding quirky, multilingual language learning curios, enjoying the linguistic shenanigans of Henry Higgins in a brilliant production of My Fair Lady, or cheering on Westlife’s Nicky Byrne as a fan taught him what Gute Besserung meant in a card he read out live on stage.

Westlife’s Nicky Byrne reads a get well card for Mark Feehily from a German fan at a concert in Birmingham, December 2022. Photo by Richard West-Soley

Westlife’s Nicky Byrne reads a get well card for Mark Feehily from a German fan at a concert in Birmingham, December 2022

Whatever your language moments of 2022, we hope you look back with contentment and fulfilment. And, as 2023 approaches, with a sense of excitement for what is yet to come.

Merry Christmas to all celebrating – and a great 2023 to all!

Charlie the dog feeling the Christmas cheer in front of a plate of cakes, December 2022.

Charlie the dog wishing all a Merry Christmas 2022 – and hoping for a cake or three.

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