What is the last thing you learned?

This is my response to the daily WordPress prompt: What is the last thing you learned?

For starters, I learned that ever since I deleted the WordPress app from my phone and replaced it with the Jetpack app, I can now see these daily WordPress writing prompts on my phone! (Of course, I could see them before, but only when viewing my WordPress dashboard from my laptop.)

Speaking of apps, I’ve been using the language-learning app, Duolingo to learn Arabic since November 2022!

The latest (not the last!) thing I learned was how to say “He is a French man from Paris.” (Does the app know I’m a Francophile, or what?!)

from right to left, the Arabic sentence says, “He is a man French from Paris” (sounds like “ina-rajool-Faransi-min-Barees”)

The app tells me that I’m on a 120-day streak (so far). I admit the first 30+ days were spent just learning the alphabet! While I’m increasing my Arabic vocabulary with each new lesson, I’m far from being able to hold a basic conversation at this point. The lessons are getting harder and I’m growing impatient because I just can’t wait to learn how to write from right to left!

How I Decided to Learn Arabic

I was inspired by family, friends, and colleagues who are currently learning languages. They’re using apps or taking in-person classes to learn French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, and Vietnamese. I wanted to learn another language, too, but didn’t know which one to study.

It’s funny how the universe gives you signs!

One day, I was watching the competitive reality show, The Amazing Race (Season 34, Episode 6) and they had the teams learn the Arabic alphabet!

Later that week, I found a small plastic pitcher with a lid in the restroom at my workplace. The pitcher was labeled, “For Ablution (Muslims Only).” A quick Google search for the meaning of ablution directed me to the Arabic word, wudu, or the act of cleansing for hygiene purposes or the ritual of purification for religious observance.

small gray plastic pitcher with a lid with a label that reads “For Ablution (Muslims Only” on public bathroom shelf

Then, ahead of the Opening Ceremony of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, I recall seeing bilingual Arabic and English World Cup promotions on TV, social media, and even bags of potato chips!

Panini sticker album: That’s La’eeb, the 2022 FIFA World Cup mascot

>> Listen to music from the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar – Music Monday: Arhbo 🎶

That’s when I decided to open the Duolingo app and start learning Arabic!

Tell me in the comments below: What language(s) would you like to learn?