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Making Virtual Connections

J 21 Yesabroad Melia Language Partner Pt 1

By Melia K., Virtual YES Abroad 2020-2021, Jordan

Is it possible to find a family while being 11,000 kilometers away? I didn’t think so, at least not until I met Nana and her family. 

Nana is my Jordanian language partner, and I meet with her every week to practice my Arabic, teach her some English words, and talk about our lives. When we first met over video call, all we could think to say was “how are you” “good” “good” - it was a little awkward. But after meeting for a few weeks, it was like we had known each other forever. We even have nicknames for each other now! I call her Nana Banana, and she calls me “Nemo” because I always forget to study the Arabic vocabulary. And along with getting to know Nana, I’ve also gotten to meet all her family. Nana has six sisters! Every week, while chatting with Nana, a new sister pops up on the screen and I get to meet her. Marhaba! They are so kind and welcoming to me, and it is lots fun to get to know them. In fact, last week Nana was playing a card game with her sisters while chatting with me. She would ask me a question about the vocabulary, and if I got it right, everyone in the room would cheer. I felt so proud of myself for remembering the words! 

So coming back to the question I asked before: Is it possible to find a family while being 11,000 kilometers away? I think it is. Because, through our Sunday morning calls, Nana and her sisters have become my family. I just can’t wait to see them in person.