So when I started my project of paying myself to study my languages, I started a spreadsheet to track my earnings. I have columns for the CDs and shares of stock I’ve bought and for the interest they’re earning and projecting when I’ll be able to buy my next CD or share of stock, as appropriate. I spend about 50% of my language earnings on stock. I’ve been buying three CDs at $100 each and then a share of stock at $250. However, I really should be buying three CDs at $100 each and then a share of stock for about $250, then two CDs at $100 each and then a share of stock. Right now I have 10 CDs and three shares of stock. So I guess that a share of stock is next.
However, my spreadsheet is now really unwieldy, with 51 columns. I didn’t notice at the time, but my version of Microsoft Office doesn’t have Access in it. Adding Access to this version would cost me $130. Should I just upgrade to another version that has it, suck it up and pay the $130, or find a freeware database to hold me until I can come up with enough to upgrade Office?
I have good financial news regarding this project, though. I’ve wanted to go to grad school for my target language but there doesn’t seem to be a way to test into the ability to go to grad school. You need a certain number of undergraduate credits. I’ve recently found out that a lot of states will let people over retirement age take college courses — for credit — for free, so long as the credits aren’t going towards a degree. So, my new plan is to save up for another 13 years and once I’m 65, I can start taking the undergraduate classes I’ll need for free. Then once I have them, I can find a graduate school.
Now I just have to start working on choosing a language for that degree. Spanish is my best language, but am I really that passionate about it? I think I’m more passionate about Italian, but Italian is the lowest-paying of the languages. Chinese pays better and I’m more passionate about Chinese, but do I want to go to St. Louis? Or Honolulu (why can’t the University of Hawaii’s Chinese graduate program be at their Hilo campus?). I would love to go to graduate school in Berkeley if I can afford it, but could I even aspire to attending there? Or should I wait and see what the future holds? Maybe I’ll fall in love with a different high-paying language that is being taught somewhere that I want to be and that I can afford.
Oh, and I’ve added another language, maybe. 50% of my ancestry is Czech and I’ve always wanted to learn Czech, so I’m going to take a stab at it on Duolingo. I’ll let you know how it works out.
Now for a Gratuitous Amazon Link. This time it’s something I’m considering buying for myself but haven’t bought yet: Pimsleur Czech Conversational Course. The only time I’ve Pimsleured (?), it was when I first started learning Chinese. I checked Pimsleur Mandarin out of the library and it went so fast that it hurt my brain. I then took a step back and went with ChinesePod (speaking of which I need to get back to downloading those so that I can listen to them in the car again). But I’m starting with Duolingo Czech and so maybe I can Pimsleur in Czech. And if I can do it, maybe I can get my dad to take a stab at it as well. . . .