Thursday, May 02, 2013

What a day

Very long, very busy day in work.  At least it was productive.  However, it also left me feeling so tired that when I was in the supermarket I mistakenly thought I had the energy to step over the basket that was blocking the small aisle in front of the till (rather than at the side of the till, where it should have been).  But it seems like my leg didn't want to be lifted up even that high and I ended up stepping down just the wrong side of the edge of the basket, which was resting in one of those wheeled stands and it, and I, went flying across the floor.  Definitely not my most elegant few seconds.  I'd say I'm going to have two lovely big bruises on my shins tomorrow but hopefully I won't be too sore to walk.  I don't think I have any arnica on hand but I'm sure I have witch hazel so I'll go and search that out in a minute.  Have had my legs up for the 45 minutes or so since I got home and only remembered that I had witch hazel now.  Typically, I had been planning to grab a bottle of milk before actually going to pay (the milk is right beside the tills) and all the fuss with falling made me forget it so now I can't even have a cup of tea.  Sigh.

I had set myself a goal for April of finding out about what exactly would be involved in doing a particular translator's exam.  The one I want to do is run by the IHK (the German Chamber of Industry and Commerce) and it's fairly difficult since you have to translate not only into your native language but also into your second language.  In terms of practical use when working as a translator there are apparently better courses and exams to do but the advantage of this one is that if I pass it I can, as far as I have been able to find out, automatically become an official state translator.  That means I'd have a stamp and seal and would be allowed to translate official documents such as birth and wedding certificates.  If my plans work out to move jobs in the next couple of years I will need a reliable source of side-income so this would be very useful for me.  

I did look up as much as I could during the first week of April never seemed to get around to being able to contact the community college to find out more specifics on the course. Luckily I remembered on Monday evening (still April!) so I made sure to make some phone calls on Tuesday and managed to get passed from pillar to post until I got the name and email address of the correct people to talk to. I got a phonecall back from the woman in charge of German courses on Tuesday evening and this morning a lovely email from the guy in charge of the actual translator prep course. So, I have a test translation from him to do and the course he has recommended for me starts in September. I have to contact them about the German courses when registration opens at the end of the month. And I'll have to wait to hear back from the chamber of commerce about whether the certificates I have will be enough to allow me to sit the exam or if I'll have to sit a test first because that woman in on holidays. It should be okay as the last certificate I did was C1 level but it's so old (1998! agghh, feels like last year!), I have to check. So Tuesday was a bit of a whirlwind but it feels good to have set things in motion. I happened to be able to mention it to my boss as well, which will be useful next year when I need to get time off for the exams.  

Between tiredness and sore legs I haven't actually looked at the test translation this evening.  I want to do it under 'real' conditions though so I'll do it writing by hand and time myself.  He said that this is a sample of what an exam looks like and would be something that should take no more than an hour - but you're allowed to use a standard dictionary.  Mad stuff.  I don't remember ever being allowed to use a dictionary in an exam before.  It's just two paragraphs so it will be interesting to see how I get on.  He paid me a very nice compliment on the written German in my email - even though I know I'm fluent, it's always nice to hear something like that from someone whose job it is to evaluate people's abilities.  

1 comment:

softiesplace said...

Wow you have been busy! Sounds like you are well on your way to certification. Thats great news. Its really an asset to be able to speak two languages fluently. I am sorry about your fall. I hope your legs feel better tomorrow. It is good that you have them elevated. It is a bummer about the tea. It can be so comforting I can take my tea with or without milk but I know not everyone likes it that way. I hope you get a good nights rest tonight.