I'm returning to work on-site at my company today for the first time in four months, and have thus rejoined the hordes of techies who fill the highways to converge upon the geographic phenomenon that is Silicon Valley. Now, most people do not consider commuting to be a desirable thing, but for me it is one of the few moments in my day when I have the time and peace to focus on my language studies. My challenge is not to have any English spoken in the car during my 40-minute journey each way, and so I make this drive to the audio accompaniment of the Pimsleur Mandarin II course, various local Spanish radio stations, and the excellent Puerta del Sol audiomagazine.
My experience this morning reminded me that processing another language (which one must do to learn successfully) requires significant concentration and therefore should not be attempted when driving unfamiliar routes. Fortunately for my fellow commuters, I know this one all too well.