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Language issues

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Hey all,

I haven't been able to find any other posts on the language issue, so I thought I'd ask: am I going to get by on the camino without much knowledge of Spanish? It's just not possible for me to take a course or even spend time learning some Spanish at home, as I'm in my last term of high school and things are generally really, really busy and crazy. I may be able to learn a bit on the plane over, but not much.

Do most people speak some degree of english? If not, what are the really important phrases/questions I should try to learn on the way over there?

Thanks!
Jo.
 

anniethenurse

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances.Vasco del Interior.Camino Finisterre& Muxia. Camino Portugues. Ruta del Ebro.
it is easier if you know some Spanish. One thing is sure - you are going to learn the basics in the pilgrim vocabulary while on the camino. 'Some more info in an earlier thread:
miscellaneous-topics/topic6426.html
buen camino
annie
 

elzi

Active Member
I hate to say this (truly i'm cringing cos it'd be great if we all learnt spanish) but I think you'll be fine. On the Frances (I wouldn't reccomend the other routes with no spanish) there are so many international travellers some english is sufficient. That said it won't always be easy but you'll soon pick up the key phrases. Maybe take a very lightweight dictionary/phrasebook or better yet befriend other pilgrims who do speak some spanish maybe (cheeky i know!)

If you're looking for useful phrases, food is always handy, as long as you can ask for a bocadillo, water and some coffee you should at least survive. I probably made the whole route with "tiene tortilla" in every bar i came to... As long as you can say "tiene kamas" (do you have beds?) and wave your credencial around (possibly mime sleeping as well?) you should get somewhere to sleep. And as someone said to me last year you learn the meaning of "completo" (full) pretty quick!

Basically once you've covered food and sleeping everything else is just useful extras. Good to know the words for foot, knee, leg, back, blisters if you're in the pharmacy. That said I've found a lot of spanish pharmacists that speak english and in the hospital in santiago they gave us an english speaking doctor!

I hate saying all this, it would be great if we could all learn spanish, and i'm trying to do that right now, but as a Galician said to me last year - If you learn Spanish they won't appreciate it in Santiago they will just tell you to learn Galician!!

So um, in conclusion, I think you'll be fine!
 
Thanks everyone, especially to that last answer, it was very useful indeed!

Regarding food, just out of interest, how do you ask if something has meat in it? (I'm a vego, but will eat fish.)
 

Annette

Member
Knowning Spanish will of course make your camino easier in some ways... and with Spanish you will be able to talk to the locals... When that is said I also want to point out... there is no reason to stress about learning spanish... - As said you will pick up some basic "pilgrim spanish" along the way... and there will always be someone who can translate...

Sometimes when learning some spanish frases... you learn how to ask... but not to understand the answers you will get. You can get by with english, a smile and some "signlanguage" ... pointing...

And of course they will apriciate any spanish you can speak in Santiago... as least you will be making an effort, and they do know that you are a pilgrim...



@Elzi... you can get by on other Caminos without Spanish, I did El Norte withoutt knowing any spanish except "gracias" and I did just fine... - all the 4 times I've been to santiago... 2 times without spanish and 2 times with spanish... I have never been told to learn galician... they accept english or whatever spanish you have... The Galician you spoke to probably meant if you are to live in Galicia you should learn Galician... but as for one passing through... spanish is quite enough.
 

Canuck

Veteran wanderer
Camino(s) past & future
?
Artemisofephesus said:
... how do you ask if something has meat in it?

To ask if there's meat, you point at the food and say ''Hay carne?'' (i karnay).
If you want to specify that you don't want meat, say ''Sin carne!''
If you want fish, say ''quiero pescado'' (kiayro peskado). You will find Merluza (good fish) on most menu.

Have a good camino

Jean-Marc
 

anniethenurse

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances.Vasco del Interior.Camino Finisterre& Muxia. Camino Portugues. Ruta del Ebro.
and don´t forget `por favor`every now and then.
annie
 

elzi

Active Member
Hi,

I am also vegetarian, it's best to ask "sin carne, sin pescado"? to everything as they tend to put meat and fish in all kinds of dishes including vegetable salads and soups. (Of course if you eat fish you will be sorted!) That said you will find most people very understanding as I believe vegetarian pilgrims are not uncommon.

Also: Annette - that is good to know! I am quite worried about doing the Norte with my terrible Spanish. I found the Portugues route whilst beautiful was very isolating with noone to speak to!
 

Annette

Member
Canuck said:
Artemisofephesus said:
... how do you ask if something has meat in it?

To ask if there's meat, you point at the food and say ''Hay carne?'' (i karnay).


Well - I'm sorry to correct you... but to ask if something has meat in it, you will ask "Lleava carne?" [jeva karne] - and to be sure you don't end up with something that has dried ham in it you will also need to ask if it has embutido... (embutido is dried meat) - Here in Spain dried meat is not considered meat... so even if you ask if it has meat in it, you can end yo with something that has dried ham...

But as Elzi says... you can ask for something sin carne o embuditdo...

------------------------------------------------------------------
Update... I have a need to share an anecdote... ;-) When I first moved here to Spain... I found most meals (not all) have somekind if meat in them... And sometimes when I asked... "LLeva Carne?" (does is contain meat?) - i would get the answer... "No no... Lleave jamon york". (no no it has york ham)

- Well to me york ham IS meat... but since it is dried meat it is no longer considered meat here in Spain... so be sure to ask about embutido as well...
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
good answers all - if you stay on the Caminos it won't matter if you cannot speak Spanish . they won't speak anything but Spanish so you both haven't bothered :wink: but gestures and point and grinning will keep you fed and watered and in a bed and so on ..and the funny thing is, when you really need to speak Spanish, if you've been bitten by a rabid dog (some refugios look after them), or bitten by a venomous spider (they hide under the toilet seats in bars) or an alligator (quite a few in the inland rivers) and you've lost a leg, for example, another pilgrim who speaks Spanish will usually turn up .... - though they most likely won't know any first aid .. :|

None of the scarey stuff above is true :wink:

I have a real block about learning Spanish - apologies, so got by in English and French and the odd word in German (though they still didn't understand me) and a lot of pointing and a lot of silence too (which was very pleasant)

I also speak Esperanto like a native ... :roll:

but - ten or twenty nouns plus total politeness (you are a guest in their country after all) plus please and thank you and thank you very much will get you by ...
unless you get kidnapped by Basque terrorists of course ........ :|
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
While I do eat some meat, I mostly eat raw fruits and vegetables.

I found no problems finding food on the Camino.

There are many nice fruit/vegetable stands as well as tiendas and supermarkets where you can buy produce.

Please pay attention to the "No toca la fruta" signs!
That means "DO NOT TOUCH THE FRUIT!"

Unlike the US, where you can squeeze and prod fruit to see if it's ripe, you are expected to POINT to what you want, and let the person help you. I never got a bad piece of fruit this way, so don't worry.

There are also lots of dried fruits, nuts, and salads.
You'll be fine. :)
 

Canuck

Veteran wanderer
Camino(s) past & future
?
Annette said:
Canuck said:
Artemisofephesus said:
... how do you ask if something has meat in it?

To ask if there's meat, you point at the food and say ''Hay carne?'' (i karnay).


Well - I'm sorry to correct you... but to ask if something has meat in it, you will ask "Lleava carne?" [jeva karne] - and to be sure you don't end up with something that has dried ham in it you will also need to ask if it has embutido... (embutido is dried meat) - Here in Spain dried meat is not considered meat... so even if you ask if it has meat in it, you can end yo with something that has dried ham...

But as Elzi says... you can ask for something sin carne o embuditdo...

------------------------------------------------------------------
Update... I have a need to share an anecdote... ;-) When I first moved here to Spain... I found most meals (not all) have somekind if meat in them... And sometimes when I asked... "LLeva Carne?" (does is contain meat?) - i would get the answer... "No no... Lleave jamon york". (no no it has york ham)

- Well to me york ham IS meat... but since it is dried meat it is no longer considered meat here in Spain... so be sure to ask about embutido as well...

I was just trying to make it as simple as possible. Not form a scholar...and I'm sorry to correct you...but jamon york is not dried meat; jamon serrano is dried meat.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
Perhaps the thing to know is how to say, "I am a vegetarian. I do not eat meat."
 

Annette

Member
Canuck ;)

What I was trying to point out is that Jamon York and all dried meat is not considered meat here in spain... if you just ask for food without meat you can still end up with a plate of something that has jamon york or jamon serrano in it... even chorizo...

Living here in Spain for 3 years now it is something I still "argue" with the restaurants when ordering food with no meat in it...
 

lynnejohn

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2005), VDLP(2007), Madrid(2009), Ingles(2009), Sur (2011), VDLP(2011)-partial, VDLP(2014)
"Soy vegetariano" worked just fine for me. Although I do agree that there was sufficient non-meat food to eat, I sometimes went hungry with just insalata or queso or tortilla. Even my favorite lentijas and other bean and soup dishes seemingly without meat are made with meat stock. It was frustrating and I must say that when I was really hungry I just ate the lentils and was done with it for that day. Knowing how to ask for meat or meat products is important if you are a strict vegetarian. If you're a vegan, good luck to you.

More to the point, I think it's important to learn a passable amount of the language when you are visiting another country. It shows respect, even if you try a little; even if your pronunciation is really bad or you choose the wrong word or phrase, people are gracious enough to help you. The phrase "como se dice ______en espanol" is an excellent learning tool ("How do you say_____in spanish"). I learned more by pointing at things and asking this question than I did from my spanish course at home.

lynne
 

anniethenurse

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances.Vasco del Interior.Camino Finisterre& Muxia. Camino Portugues. Ruta del Ebro.
lynnejohn said:
More to the point, I think it's important to learn a passable amount of the language when you are visiting another country. It shows respect, even if you try a little; even if your pronunciation is really bad or you choose the wrong word or phrase, people are gracious enough to help you. The phrase "como se dice ______en espanol" is an excellent learning tool ("How do you say_____in spanish"). I learned more by pointing at things and asking this question than I did from my spanish course at home.

lynne
I agree with you lynnejohn - it is very polite to try to speek the language in the country where you spend maybe 6 or 7 weeks walking in sometimes very rural areas. You don´t have to be fluent but it is of importance to have knowledge of some daily vocabulary. Of course there is a way to get around with sign language with pointing things...While in Spain the pilgrims will learn quite a many words and expressions without an effort really.
Before my camino I took an evening course (12 evenings, 24 lessons) and those lessons were of so much pleasure for me during the camino. I´m not fluent at all but know the basics in the present tense. It is my seventh language (I´m fluent in 3.5 languages) and will continue the Spanish course this winter.
http://www.santiago.ca/lexicon.html = some help here with your Spanish
miscellaneous-topics/topic5577.html?hilit=grant#p32690 = some phrase books in this thread

buen camino
annie
 

elzi

Active Member
I would agree that there seems to be lots of meat in food that is not covered under the spanish definition of "carne"!
Vegetable dishes, especially lentil dishes are always made with meat stock as far as I can tell. Unfortunately meat makes me sick so on the occasion I have eaten veg soup in france and spain i have usually spent the night in the bathroom regretting it!!
I find myself very suspicious and these days and just avoid any mixed dishes in which i can't exactly identify the ingredients. Asking if there is "carne" in the vegetable soup/salad always produces a "no" but once I didn't eat a meat stock flavoured soup (i could smell the meat stock!) and the chef came out of the kitchen and asked why! When my spanish speaking pilgrim friend explained the meat stock made me ill he was very apologetic and made me egg salad instead. Maybe a modicum of spanish is neccessary if you want to be very strict about what you are eating.

I would always start out ordering in bad spanish (it seems very rude to start a conversation in english!) but often I am replied to in english!
(or more often in german since they are the more common pilgrims!)
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
Hello Jo,
Of course you will "get by" on the Camino by just speaking English....however you will miss so much of the interaction that happens along the way. There are so many ways to pick up a few essential basics of any language. Considering that you are obviously studying for your final exams and therefore don't have much time for anything else at the moment, why don't you at least learn some set phrases that probably proove useful for you along the Way. Try and learn one a day, plus a set of necessary nouns and verbs in the 1st and 3rd person only (for you and for them)! Don't bother about other verb formations.
We are a multi-lingual family (5-6 languages each) and nearly all our languages have been learnt by "picking them up" apart from our first foreign language in school. My 6 year old grand-daughter who is still in preparatory school here, is already on her 3rd language (Spanish and Italian are fluent and she is now learning English). She takes great pleasure copying words down on post-it tabs, from her computer programme and goes around the house sticking them on the various objects that she is currently learning. She does this all by herself without hardly any involvement from us. She now understands English more or less perfectly, but only speaks it when asked to. (ie. when she wants something)! What I'm trying to say is that is a 6 year old can do it - so can you! Just needs a little bit of good-will on your part. To learn a new language is like doing a jigsaw puzzle. You open the box, turn the pieces out on the table and then look in horror. Best way to tackle the problem is to fish out all the border pieces and get them in place, then do the easier internal parts and finally the sky, grass trees, etc. That's how I see learning a language. First get your border in place, the rest come with practice later. Hope that helps you a bit!
English mother tongue people take it so much for granted that the whole world speaks English, that yes, one becomes lazy by hoping that someone will pop up and help us out of a predicament, or just generally chat to us. Finally, deference to the locals I believe to be important. We are, after all in their country. A few introducionary phrases can go a long way. Anne
 
Wow, thanks for all the replies!

I think I read somewhere about the ham-not-being-meat thing (which is kinda really weird!), so I'll make sure to at least learn some phrases relating to that and just general stuff. I'm fluent in English and German and could probably get by in French, so I've got a lot of pilgrims that can help out as well!

It all sounds so fun, not being able to speak a language very well or at all... I can't wait until November 18th! Which is when my plane leaves. Yay!
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
This is all true of course but none of it includes, or makes any allowance for, the way that brains are wired - between 70 and 80% of linguists are female ... it isn't choice or not being lazy - it is a brain design thing ... if a person has a male male brain then they will find it almost impossible to learn a new language if they are past childhood.

it is all very well giving tips and methods and so on but that doesn't rewire the brain connections to retain the information, not if the brain doesn't have that localised facility for languages ...

you might as well keep giving a person with a female female brain tips on how to map read ....

and before the pc attack arrives ... at about 42 days the female embryo (all babies are female until this moment - and even after birth the female remains the stronger gender) is flooded for about two weeks with female or male hormones - this decides the sex of the baby .... but it isn't quite that simple .. it depends on the mix .. so you can end up with
male male males,
male female males,
female male males,
female female females,
female male females, and
male female females

6 genders - which, if it were more commonly known, might reduce the incidence of homophobia etc .. anyway, languages - male male don't have the localised language area in the brain .... female female don't have the map reading 3d spacial awareness centre in the brain and we are all, each of us, one of those six ... (so which are you???)
so - those who can speak please do help out those who cannot - and all will be well - :wink:
 
Wow, that's so cool! I think I'd be a male female female, then, because everyone I know (including myself) says that I'm pretty balanced in male and female traits... I can, for instance, read a map quite well!!
 

nellpilgrim

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SDC-Fisterra 08/Camino Frances SJPP to SDC 09/Nuremburg-SDC 11- ongoing
This little thread has, like most things linguistic, taken an interesting and scenic route and one I am glad I followed. I found that though my spanish was embryonic having a working knowledge of french was rather useful. From Roncevalles to Burgos we found that people spoke/understood french better than english. On that basis, whenever our spanish was insufficient, we started to ask people if they spoke english or french and they generally selected french as the language of choice. In the same geographic range I also noticed a high level of Citroen cars -from rusty little 70s Deux Chevaux to the latest C6. Though I was walking the Camino Frances I hadn't expected the 'French connection' be expressed in such modern formats. I wonder if French pilgrims take comfort in those souvenirs of home they find along the way? I am keen to find out if the Camino Ingles is scattered with artifacts, both cultural and linguistic, of things English? Are mini minors the vehicles of choice and a preference for steamed puddings to be expected!
I am from the west of Ireland and last year when I walked from Santiago to Fisterra it was literally like coming home. This year that process of 'recognition and connection' became an integral part of my camino as I walked from SJPP to Santiago though the 'connectors' were different and often surprising they echoed that feeling of 'coming home'.
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
Br. David said:
if a person has a male male brain then they will find it almost impossible to learn a new language if they are past childhood.
Sorry, Br David, I don't agree. Adriaan speaks (and writes) completely fluently 6 languages plus a few dialects too (like Swiss-German, ugh)! and apart from Dutch (mother tongue) French and English, he learnt the others after leaving school. It is often a question of opportunity (meaning where you live) and also curiosity, or simply wishing to connect with people (he is a great talker). Also the more languages you have under your belt (or rather in your head), the easier it becomes to learn new ones, so Jo, seeing as you already know French and German, besides English, you will most probably find it easy to pick up useful phrases and necessary words. Just start now! Good luck. Anne
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
it isn't my idea, it isn't a choice, it isn't fashion, it is science ... so what makes you think he is a male male Male? He must have a clear langauge centre to retain so many languages, ergo, his is not a male male brain ...

Male and female UK teachers
Male brain subjects (to do with aptitude from brain construction)
Physics........... 82% Male - 18% female
IT ............... 69...........31
Sciences ........65............35
Chemistry ......62............38

female brain subjects
Spanish ......22% Male - 78% Female
French........25..........75
German .....25...........75
Drama ...... 33...........67

Occupations requiring spatial ability (Australia, New Zealand, & UK 1998))
Aero Engineer .... 100% Male - 0% Female
Flight Engineer ....100..........0
Nuclear Engineer ...98...........2
Architect............ 91 ..........9
Accountant .........83..........17
BA Pilot .............98...........2
Quantas ............99...........1
Ansett...............99...........1
Snooker Players ....87.........13

(and I believe that the priesthood is also an exclusively male brain activity - errmm ..this is religion & spirituality isn't it?) .. )


so - I think you may have understood the male male .. male female type males .. doesn't suggest he isn't a 'real' male (whatever that is) only that he has a language location in his brain therefore he cannot be a male male male - it isn't an insult, only an observation :wink:

all is well ... so, many people will find it difficult to retain new languages - some will find it impossible
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
Maybe "feminine" and "masculine" might be better words to describe those traits.
Really has nothing to do with gender.
Or "left-brained" and "right-brained."

Anyway, I understand your point, and agree for the most part.
I tend to be more "masculine" in my thinking... linear and direct...
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Annie, why do you think using the words masculine and feminine would be better? - of course it is to do with gender .. gender? genitalia? - male bodies .. female bodies so male humans and female humans ... you think for people who feel themselves trapped in the wrong gender body it isn't about gender?

It isn't about fashion, or about being PC, nor is it about what people want to hear, it is about scientific facts ... it isn't my opinion to be argued with .. anyone that for some odd reason 'disagrees' , well let them go and study the subject

don't you think such knowledge brings comfort to those who have struggled for years, decades, and feel themselves failures?

(and it also has lots to do with lefthanded and righthanded brains)
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
:::laughing:: I don't know why.. sometimes the words trip people up.

Maybe I need to read the post closer?
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
it isn't my idea, it isn't a choice, it isn't fashion, it is science

That settles it for me. No woman can be a scientist, and no man need bother to learn a foreign language. I never knew life could be so simple.
 
Ok, everyone is going to stop now. This is my thread so I am claiming my ownership and declaring that anything not to do with language ON THE CAMINO should be posted elsewhere.

:lol:
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
Well THAT is a very masculine/male/man type thing to do!
The NERVE of some people! :::laughing:::
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
"Headdesk" is a new word in the unfamiliar language of computer, so as a Man, I do not think I can understand it. That would be Woman's work. Can you give me something in the engineering world to which I can relate with my right brain?
 

meganTHC

New Member
elzi said:
I hate to say this (truly i'm cringing cos it'd be great if we all learnt spanish) but I think you'll be fine. On the Frances (I wouldn't reccomend the other routes with no spanish) there are so many international travellers some english is sufficient. That said it won't always be easy but you'll soon pick up the key phrases. Maybe take a very lightweight dictionary/phrasebook or better yet befriend other pilgrims who do speak some spanish maybe (cheeky i know!)

If you're looking for useful phrases, food is always handy, as long as you can ask for a bocadillo, water and some coffee you should at least survive. I probably made the whole route with "tiene tortilla" in every bar i came to... As long as you can say "tiene kamas peros" (do you have dog beds?) and wave your credencial around (possibly mime sleeping as well?) you should get somewhere to sleep. And as someone said to me last year you learn the meaning of "completo" (full) pretty quick!

Basically once you've covered food and sleeping everything else is just useful extras. Good to know the words for foot, knee, leg, back, blisters if you're in the pharmacy. That said I've found a lot of spanish pharmacists that speak english and in the hospital in santiago they gave us an english speaking doctor!

I hate saying all this, it would be great if we could all learn spanish, and i'm trying to do that right now, but as a Galician said to me last year - If you learn Spanish they won't appreciate it in Santiago they will just tell you to learn Galician!!

So um, in conclusion, I think you'll be fine!


yea, i did el camino without knowing much spanish at all. I did take 2 years of it in high school, but that was years ago and I didn't even get a good grade in that class. You should be fine. Heck, I went to mexico no problem but of course in the tourist areas most citizens speak english.
 

Bridget and Peter

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
Artemisofephesus said:
*headdesk*

Love this thread. Love 'headdesk'. Love artemisofephesus.

Thank you.
 

FatmaG

Active Member
A very interesting thread - for everything, the languages necessary or useful on the camino, the brain thing, the linguistics etc.

Just ONE question : I am a "female" (brain and body) - speaking +- several languages; but also with some 'male' in my head (able to read maps quite correctly)
BUT I am not native English speaker and I do not understand that "headdesk" thing....
Could anyone explain please?


Artemisofephesus :
Buen Camino to you.
It is such a wonderful experience full of little (and big) miracles, rich encounters and amazing moments; and every camino seems to be so very different from the one of the other pilgrims around you.
Yours - without Spanish - will be fine, it will be yours and it will be just the right way for you!
 

Sansthing

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
French Camino (2009), French Camino (2011), Via de la Plata (2012), Camino Inglês (2014),
I am a native English speaker but I don't know what ''headdesk'' means either :roll: . Would anyone care to elucidate :?:
Sandra :arrow:
 
Camino(s) past & future
2002-2019 Via Podiensis, Camino Frances, Via de la plata, Camino del Norte, Camino Primitivo, etc.
Hello Brother David and thanks for many an interesting post. Particularly in the "New Age" debate. Must agree with other contributors disagreeing about males and languages. I learnt, of necessity, to speak fluent Norwegian when I was 26 to 29 and speak usable Spanish now I'm 60! BUT, you cleverly point out, I am probably not male male male. This is quite true, although I am not sure where I am on the scale.(??!!) I can also read maps. Whoops!

Best to you all,

Kevin
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
From the Urban Dictionary: Headdesk: Often used in online chat as an expression of frustration or disappointment.
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
Apparently being "male male" may be indistinguishable from being autistic (emphasis added):

Sex-differences in social development can also be examined by looking at sex-biases in developmental conditions. Specific language delay, semantic-pragmatic disorder, and autism spectrum conditions are all more common in males (Bishop, 1990; Rutter, 1978; Wing, 1981). Autism in particular has been described as an extreme manifestation of some sexually dimorphic traits or an ‘extreme male brain’ (see Baron-Cohen, 2002).

Individuals with autism perform poorly on tests where females are usually superior to males, such as the ‘Reading the Mind in the Eyes’ test (Baron-Cohen, Wheelwright, & Hill, 2001a), but perform better than people without autism on tests where males usually outperform females, such as the ‘Embedded Figures Task’ (Jolliffe & Baron-Cohen, 1997; Baron-Cohen & Hammer, 1997). Autism spectrum conditions are characterised by difficulties in social relationships, but also by narrow, restricted interests. If autism actually is an exaggeration of typical sex-differences, then normally developing males should show more restricted interests, compared to females.

Is this the case? Intriguing evidence comes from a study of the Autism-Spectrum Quotient (AQ). This self-administered instrument measures autistic traits, and consists of 5 subscales (communication, social, imagination, local details, and attention switching). Males score slightly but significantly higher on the scale as a whole and on all subscales except local details. Higher male scores on the imagination and attention switching scales suggest that males are more likely to have restricted interests than females (Baron-Cohen, Wheelwright, Skinner, Martin, & Clubley, 2001b). Another source of evidence comes from tests of the drive to understand systems (‘systemising’ see Baron-Cohen 2002, 2003), which, by definition, involves a very narrow focus of attention on each variable in the system. Males score higher on both the ‘Systemising Quotient’ (SQ) (Baron-Cohen, Richler, Bisarya, Gurunathan, & Wheelwright, 2003) and on an experimental test of systemising (Lawson, Baron-Cohen, & Wheelwright, 2004).
 
A

Anonymous

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Interesting but wouldn't have thought so as male male male brains are tribal - football fans .. beer outings, hunting parties, very non-verbal and non articulate and all these male groups are filled with practical jokes and the far end of the Autistic scale doesn't do tribal and doesn't do practical jokes .. nor actually understand the rules of play . I think the the Autism area is outside the field - but this in only my personal opinion .. isn't Aspergers/Autism scale the asocial loner type IT worker, the lonesome train-spotter with his lists to tick off and times to calculate?

(that isn't meant to be in any way an insult, merely an observation - as far as I am concerned we are all valid members of the same hive)

All very interesting though.
 
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Even with a veneer of humor, dominating male behavior may be a signal of mental illness. The distinction may be more in the asocial behavior and detachment from empathy than in the humor. If the humor is asocial, it may signal the inability of the humorist to accurately foresee the effect of the barb, a step along the Asperger's scale.
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Artemis original question on this thread had to do with the need for knowing Spanish when walking the Camino, but the thread has since veered well away from Camino issues. A reminder that this forum is aimed at sharing experiences and questions about the Camino.
Margaret
 
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As far as possible, without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even to the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.

Ehrmann, 1927
 
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