I just thought that you could probably carve a great career writing medical-based science fiction. I would love to read that!
The thought has already crossed my mind. I have a few ideas, that have been taking space in my brain for years. But when considering finally learning to write stories (not talking about career here
), I get stuck at the first question: in which langauge to write? I just know that not in Czech. English or French? I write better in English but that could change with a lot of work.
I wrote a good post and it got erased, due to internet troubles. The "internet" part or my merry "coffee, internet, and antibiotics" motto was a bit premature.
Of course it was the best post ever. Every tragically lost post looks that way in memory
It was focused on PM's questions. Let's dig in my memory a bit:
1.the langauge test: the name OLS language assessment or whatever won't help you. It is accessible only to Erasmus students, only in the language they are studying in during their stay, and only twice. At the beginning and at the end.
I had visited Bordeaux before. Once. A very good impression but of course I had no idea I'd spend half a year there. I was worried about Bordeaux being a rather small town. Fortunately, all the wiki and similar sources of information are not too correct. There are plenty towns/villages, that are officially not part of Bordeaux (and therefore not counted in), but de facto are part of Bordeaux. And those change everything. More population, the towns are still at the tram or bus, they make one city with "proper" Bordeaux in the center. You don't usually notice the end of one and beginning of other.
It has won some popularity contests and is called the best place in France for living. So, it might suffice to me one day
Public transport is ok. If you like to ride a bike, Bordeaux is ideal, exactly for the reasons why Prague is not and all those attempts to make it an alternative to cars here are foolish. Parking is a bit harder but not that bad. Finding a house or a flat is not easy and the prices are high. Not as high as in Paris, that is an extreme, but twice as high as in Nancy or Orleans. Very good healthcare (for examply cardiology is full of patients even from Paris, who choose Bordeaux instead), plenty schools (can't talk about quality as I know nothing about it), beautiful libraries, lots of culture, the city is quite clean. One hour from the seaside (both by car and by train/bus). No TGV for now, but it is being built.
3.Important languages in healthcare: excellent question, especially as your guess is wrong and so would have been mine months ago.
Number 1 is Arabic. In particular Moroccan and Algerian, than the rest. Younger people are usually bilingual or French+heritage passive Arabic. Older patients are sometimes monolingual and that can be a trouble. You need to communicate with them even when there is noone visiting, especially as a nurse. Other languages of former colonies are not too important, their natives are usually bilingual (or tri or even more). Actually, I am considering learning Arabic, should I happen to get a job in France. It is partially a sad thought, but a realistic one. No matter what happens with the whole european immigrant problem, France is different and has different ties to the countries. I am convinced the langauge problem will be solved in the next ten or fifteen years, with the generation exchange. But until then, it is a bit hard to count on heritage speakers being numerous enough among the healthcare staff.
Number 2 is English, with a catch. I've seen it needed twice and always with Germans. And Germans are not that rare in France (and I was in Bordeaux, which is as far from the borders as you can get). So how comes that the Germans and the French are not learning each other's languages? I understand why they are not learning Czech or Swedish, but they have each other as a neighbour. Nope, instead a doctor uses bad English with a patient talking bad English. How on earth does informed consent and patient compliance work under such conditions? Really, I think this is shameful. I haven't seen any English monolingual patient during my six months in Bordeaux. Whole Europe should open the eyes and stop pretending English is the saviour of our language situation. Nope, it is often rather the parasite. Governments fuel the whole ESL business, so that we are all less equiped for the language barriers we are actually facing, what a wise decision. French medecine students can sign up for medical English classes. But unless I really overlooked something, nothing else is being offered. But I think one of the reasons is the same as in the Czech Republic: both countries are afraid of people leaving for better paying Germany en masse.
Number 3 could be Spanish, but again, there is a catch. I have met a monolingual Spanish cleaning lady, who was glad I could just switch for her. So there are some monolingual immigrants from european countries and they get ill sometimes, I suppose. But vast majority of all those immigrants or people with Spanish or Italian roots speak French. From people my age (not counting Erasmus students, but people who have moved for long term studies or work) up to people who have arrived fourty years ago. I can therefore imagine Italian or Spanish being useful a few times per decade, but not much more. I already talked about German. Other than that, I heard about the Polish immigrant communitites, but I suppose they are more noticeable in other regions than in the south, as I haven't met anyone. I have met a Russian immigrant, who spoke perfect French, and I suppose the same will be true about people of various native languages, who simply didn't fall for the English trap.