Wednesday, June 22, 2011

AZERTY = #$@#)(*&!

A few months after we moved to France, we visited my brother-in-law in Grenoble, and I had my first encounter with an "AZERTY" keyboard. We didn't get along. This is the European standard. Basically, a few select keys are in different places, which enables you to look down after typing awhile and see such words as hqve, ,uch, auiet and other such proble,s.

We'd been there a few days, and I had the rare fortune of being granted an hour or so to myself for some writing... Alone. With no children. And with no one around me speaking French. Just me and my bro-in-law's computer for some quiet and solitude, where I could spill out my thoughts about all I'd taken in during the previous whirlwind days in the city. I simply wanted to check email, type my notes about the trip and send them to myself. But my email password was one that makes a pattern on the keyboard. So I wasn't sure exactly what the actual letters were... On any keyboard, my reaction to this would look like @#$@_)(#@$).

Fast forward seven years, and at my new job in January, I had the luxury of using a computer at the office, and didn't need to do any work from home. My work would be contained there. Great! Except for that little AZERTY proble, again. I teach English. Also known as qnglqis...

Six months later now, I'm bilingual in QWERTY and AZERTY, though it's taken me some time. And it's a good thing, because Bernard just gave me a mini laptop for my birthday, and yes, it's in that other for,qt, so it was really ti,e to qdjust....

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