Gilles and Lynda
We are planning our retirement within a few years and are thinking about living most of it, if not all of it, in Costa Rica. We started learning Spanish a few years ago because of this, but it never really stuck as we did not get many chances to practice. Fortunately, we learned of Erika through a newsletter we receive occasionally from a relocation service and decided to give virtual meetings to learn Spanish a try.
From our very first conversation with Erika we felt quite at ease. Within a few weeks, most of our weekly conversations were conducted almost exclusively in Spanish even though we often hesitate on the right words to use; Erika helps us along the way typing suggestions in the Skype chat space.
We decided not to have a specific structure to our conversations except when we need explanations on certain grammar points. We talk about our work, the weather, current events, or any other topics of interest which is great because those are all subjects that may come up when we interact with Ticos while in Costa Rica.
As we are preparing another trip to Costa Rica, we talk about the regions we would like to visit and she gives us a lot of information to guide us.
A great aspect of these conversations is that it combines learning Spanish with learning about Costa Rica, the country, its people, and its culture. Erika supplies us with links to interesting videos and podcasts (usually in Spanish) about Costa Rica or featuring Costa Rican personalities. When necessary, we also get helpful documents about Spanish grammar rules and exercises in a learning application.
We cannot say enough good things about Erika and we are very fortunate to have found her.
Gilles Champagne and Lynda Delorey