Mysterious Albania

Nestled in the heart of the Mediterranean with Greece, Macedonia, Kosovo and Montenegro as its neighbours, most people still don’t know much about this amazing country.  Influenced by the Greeks, Romans, Italian and Turks, Albania does have a long and troubled history. But since communism ended in 1992 and the Republic of Albania was founded, … Read more

A Chinese Cultural Calamity

In June 2010, I began a six-month journey through Asia, and my first day saw me crashing into Chinese culture. I arrived in the hutongs of Beijing (traditional closely grouped houses) where I was met with the foreign smell of uncovered meats being cooked on narrow streets, the noisy chatting of families sat on the … Read more

The World on Film – well, part of it

I spent nine months studying translation in Barcelona in 2003, so the other night, I watched the film Pot Luck (the original title: L’Auberge Espagnole) for nostalgic reasons.  Alongside the memories, another thing that struck me about this film was the variety of languages that were spoken. You had English, French, Spanish and Danish – … Read more

Liz’s Language Mission

Recently I set myself a mid-year resolution.  I graduated in Hispanic Studies back in 2004, but haven’t really spoken Spanish since, and when recently a colleague needed me to talk to someone on the phone, I struggled to keep the conversation going.  Thinking back to some of the experiences I had during my year living … Read more