When we first moved to Latin America, back in 2001, our Spanish language skills were minimal. We had what we call 'restaurant and taxi' Spanish, allowing us to get where we were going (usually a restaurant) and order our food once we got there.
I am taking Spanish lessons over the Internet. And as much as I'd like to pretend that my life is a Nora Ephron film, this has turned out to be no You've Got Mail-esque scenario.
Are You Ever Too Old To Learn A New Language? Ex-Pats in Costa Rica Discuss "Espeaking The Espanish"
When you're standing in the store with a line of people behind you and the cashier mumbles something like quatromilledoscientoscinquenta and it sounds like quatromillcan'tyouevencountyoustupidstupidgringo, it's a bit nerve-wracking.
Chilean Spanish is hard (for me). Guatemalan Spanish is slow, deliberate. Guatemalans pronounce all their letters. I got over-confident with my Spanish level.