Public speaking

This morning I worked on finalising a speech I am giving on Thursday, about making friends when moving to a new city. This sounded like an easy task when I agreed to doing this.

Here’s the twist: it’s a speech in German. And although German is my native language I have never delivered a formal speech in German, not since giving short talks in school on topics like the rain forest and wanting to move to Costa Rica.

I feel quite excited about having been asked to take part in a mock conference and deliver a speech to a group of interpreting students, but I am also quite nervous. Being around English speakers all day long can make me feel like my German is quite rusty at times, and switching quickly between languages when I have concentrated on one of them for a while (a couple of hours, for example) it takes me a few sentences to switch over properly. You’d think it’d be the other way around…

But – I have lived my professional life in the UK so far and never had to be “professional” and “grown up” in German. So I haven’t necessarily developed the register or behaviours that you’d expect – or so I think.

It’ll be interesting to see how it goes… scarily I may get feedback on my public speaking as well. I’ll try not to ramble…

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