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5 Things That Every Bilingual Person Does

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Being bilingual is crucial nowadays. Due to globalization, you will always find or have a coworker, employer or employee who was born and raised in another country or from a different culture. With the rise of immigrants arriving everyday from everywhere, it's impossible for you to only speak one language. Schools make you learn at least two foreign languages during your academic path (or in my case, three), and if you have an interest in learning even one more language in your life, you can go to a language course and have a diploma of pro-efficiency within one year.

And here is where the things get RIDICULOUSLY funny: You will never be able to speak one language only, ever again! And I say this from experience. Apart of speaking in Portuguese at every given moment of every given day, I will always use a few English, German or French expressions every now and then.

Your brain starts to think in the many languages you speak. Every word, sentence and paragraph is now translated into three or four languages. Get ready for a few strange looks during a conversation, whenever you are is translating "I'll get a vanilla ice cream" in Mandarin, even though you are speaking Spanish.

You get attracted to the culture. No matter if you never wanted to go to Greece and float in the Dead Sea, once you learn how to say kaliméra (aka "good morning" in Greek) the right way, you will imagine yourself in a strolling around the Parthenon, trying to find every single statue of the Agora.

You start to know how to differentiate accents. You probably know how to distinguish a Southern accent from a New York one, but can you actually differentiate an Irish from a Northern Irish? Or a Yorkshire from a Liverpudlian or the accent from a person from Leeds and one from Liverpool? You will be a pro at it, specially if you get to live in any of these locations for a certain period of time.

Foreign music becomes an addiction to your YouTube lists, and I'm not talking about "The Macarena" (Spanish) or the "Ai Se Eu Te Pego" (Portuguese from Brazil). You will add songs that make your brain pump up like the German bands The Ärtze and Rammstein or the French singer Charles Aznavour.

Your book collection will be worthy of a Pulitzer Prize winner. You'll begin to search for books in the languages that you speak. And you get to buy more paperback dictionaries, which get extremely useful while reading those foreign sayings books that you just bought.

On a final note, just understand that your life will never be the same ever again.
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