Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Ever since the Salish Conference in March, I made a commitment to attend the language program on the Kalispel Reservation at least once a week. In particular, I like to attend during the daily immersion when tribal elders speak for one hour in nothing but the language. English goes away for that hour. If the listeners want to participate, they also have to speak Salish. I generally don't understand everything, but my weekly immersion has greatly accelerated my learning process.

When I arrived today for immersion, the group was preparing to leave for a mini-field trip. I had to smile a little because they were planning to dig spring beauties, just as my class had done a few days before. This time, I remembered to take pictures of the beautiful little potatoes. Of course, they are so tiny, I doubt you could get a good meal.

The best part of the immersion is the opportunity to sit at the feet of the elders and to listen to their stories in the language. Over the last few weeks, I have felt truly fortunate.

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