Podcast #10: Interview with Leandra
I celebrated my ninth year in France last week. My life here has changed A LOT since that first week in back in 2007. I feel integrated into the culture and I speak French almost perfectly. I’ve come a long way.
I know you don’t have 9 years to perfect your listening skills or to figure out how to integrate into English-speaking cultures. That’s why I’m doing something a little different on the podcast this week. It’s a longer episode that usual because I’m joined by my very first guest, Leandra from English with Leandra.
Leandra and I share our experiences of living in France. She was lucky enough to spend a year living in Martinique, a Carribean island that’s a department and region of France. She’ll tell you about her experiences of fitting in with native speakers (more on this notion in the episode), cultural faux-pas and misunderstandings.
Listen to episode #10 to learn from our mistakes and find out why small talk and casual conversations are so important if you want to fit in with native English speakers.
More About Today’s Guest
Leandra King is a native English speaker and online teacher from Barbados. She is the founder of English with Leandra where she teaches non-native English speakers everyday, casual conversational English, specifically how to socialise and fit in with native English speakers.
Read my review of Leandra’s book, “The Culture Sensitive Phrasebook”.
Watch and listen to our most recent chat on why your English is probably rude.
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Thank you, ladies. That was lovely! Two things I learned is the word for “kissing” in French evidently comes from the same root as in the old Russian лобзания (lobzaniya). The second thing is just an observation. I’m currently living in New Orleans, which used to be francophone territory in the US, and the kissing part is still very much cultural here. It was strange coming from the more Puritan (and “modest”) Kentucky to the French, predominately Catholic Louisiana. Everybody wants to kiss you LOL. I think I got used to it and am sort of going with it now, but it definitely doesn’t come easily to me either.
That’s really interesting Elena, I didn’t know that about New Orleans – I’m kind of surprised!
What an interesting observation, Elena! I also really enjoyed this conversation, and I particularly liked your point about sticking out for the right reasons around 24-25 minutes, Leandra! I’m really happy that you mentioned the emotional issues around living in another country. It corresponds quite well with the visual representation of culture shock.
Thanks for your comment Sam. This emotional component is real and merits its own discussion. Would be nice to hear your thoughts on living abroad too at some point.