Photo: Brian Mackey

Jane is on her way to a Spanish evening class at URI.

“You know that movie, The Bucket List? A guy makes a list of what he wants to do before he dies. I saw it, and I thought ‘I’m going to go home and get those lists that I wrote when I was 20 years old.’ I found some, and number two or three on each one was ‘Learn Spanish’. My youngest kid just went to college, so I thought I’d get something in place before she goes, so I don’t have the severe trauma of that experience.”

Two summers ago, she went to Nicaragua to study Spanish there. “I hadn’t travelled alone like that for a long time. I might go to Guatemala in April for a vacation – I have a cousin who’s a missionary there.”

Originally from Hawaii, she already speaks Japanese from her time living in Japan teaching English. “My husband and I were living in Japan, and he came home one day and said ‘I dont want to teach English, I want to teach Japanese history.’ Japanese people are into superlatives, so he went to the most superlative place possible, which was Harvard. After that, he got a job at URI. That was 11 years ago.”

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