Hello?…. Tashi Delekkk!!!
I can usually expect at least one phone call to start like that every Wednesday. About a month or so ago, somehow my friend Dekyi signed ME up for her Lhakar pledge. I saw on Facebook that she had pledged to call me every Wednesday and we’d have our phone calls in Tibetan. My jaw dropped. Who signs someone else up for their pledge?!
At first I was deathly afraid. My Tibetan isn’t the greatest and I always feel really awkward trying to speak it. I cried and hollered saying I didn’t want to do it, but she forced me to do it and said we’d try it for a half-hour and then switch back to our regular English. I knew if I wanted to talk to her, it would have to be her way, and Dekyi and I always have lots to talk about ie. Every girl’s favourite topic: GOSSIP!
Surprisingly, that half-hour flew by! And since that first call, I’m always really looking forward to our calls, and don’t even time the call to see when the half-hour is up.
Although I know how bad gossip and gushing is, for me, it really makes the awkward conversation in Tibetan bearable, and even fun because I have so much I want to say and update her on, I often forget about how difficult it is! Think ‘a spoon-full of sugar, makes the medicine go down’.
Although, it’s not a HUGE leap yet, I do actually feel a difference in my confidence in speaking in Tibetan with Dekyi and other close friends on the phone, and it’s also been great catching up with my good friend who lives across the country, which is good for a community like ours (we’re spread out ALL OVER the world!)
Try it out with your friends, and if they don’t agree, just publicly pledge them like Dekyi did. 🙂
ps. Yup, those are actually photos of me and Dekyi talking on a regular Wednesday evening.