Are you prepared? Having a open mind usually
help when you visit other cultures and countries. Complaining
about things doesn't help anything. So if you're in a country
where you don't understand ANYTHING, ZERO, NADA then take
time to learn a word or two each day. Trust me it helps.
When I went to Finland for my first season overseas I had
never even heard of the country or the language Finnish.
It was very different from the other languages that I studied
and heard before. It took time to get adjusted. Thank goodness
I had a great roommate who started to ask and learn a word
a day. I caught on and borrowed books from the library to
get a better understanding of the language. I learned enough
to understand but speaking Finnish was/is a different story.
It is a difficult language. After three years of visiting
and playing in Finland I still can't speak fluently. Only
bits and pieces here and there but my understanding is average.
Enough to know what the team and coach were talking about
most of the time :)
So the key is to try to your best to acquaint yourself
with the culture if you wish you make your stay worthwhile
and fun. Visit the library when you're there for language
books and tapes or plan and study before you leave your
country. That is the best advice I have. Planning before
you leave is better and you can find the translation dictionary
that you need in your home country.
is a great place to buy cheap books
online. Amazon in many languages and countries:
Amazon - USA
Amazon - United Kingdom
Amazon - Germany
Amazon - France
Amazon - Japan
It’s better to be prepared I can testify to that because
going to Spain last year was hard for me. Although Spanish
is a second language in the USA I still didn't understand
the rapid language or culture. I didn't have a translation
book when I left. Trying to communicate with my team was hard
but thank goodness a few kind people tried to speak English.
After a month of struggling I started taking Spanish in a
local university. From October - January I had classes that
lasted 2hrs during three days out of the week. I met many
nice people, two students from Alaska and many throughout
Europe. It was nice meeting people and it gave me social time
and fun outside of basketball.
There are many places online that have small learning courses
online to help you before you leave. I will try to get a
list of them and software you can buy.
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