Thanks for the beard compliment. I keep wanting to shave it, but Jane and the girls tell me they like it. It's nice not having to shave.
It has been such a kick trying to communicate in other languages. Like everyone, I took the 2 years of foreign language in high school (Spanish), but until the last couple of years, I've never left the US (except for Canada!).
Erin said it is kind of like cracking a code. If you say the right sounds, people give you what you want. If you don't, no prize. I thought that was funny.
It's Interesting that many times, even in France, when I would attempt to great the person in the local language, they would answer back in English. So, sometimes I'd be dissapointed when I didn't get to practice more language. But, other times when they spoke no English at all, I was kind of stressed out about being on my own!
It is definately a different experience, just starting out being a foreigner at this age. I'm just sorry I avoided it for so long.