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Pia Leong
Born in tropical north Queensland, Australia, Pia is a theatre designer who somehow found herself traveling the world on a bicycle and living in a tent. "Remote Encounters" documents her courageous attempts to communicate in the local language on her travels.
Articles by Pia
Understanding Austrian Mountain Slang

Understanding Austrian Mountain Slang

The German language is not the same in every German speaking country. Here are some quick tips to help you better understand the German dialect spoken in the remote corners of western Austria.
What Is ‘Swabian’ German?

What Is ‘Swabian’ German?

Just when you think you finally understand German, you discover that many Germans also speak a regional dialect. We encountered one of these on the first leg of our bike journey, as we rode through the Black Forest.
Journey’s End: How Seven Months On The Road Changed Me — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 6

Journey’s End: How Seven Months On The Road Changed Me — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 6

We’ve come to the end of the road. After thousands of kilometers and countless Spanish conversations, here are the lessons I’m taking home with me.
A Little Practice Equals Way More Confidence — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 5

A Little Practice Equals Way More Confidence — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 5

It’s a good thing that South Americans love to talk! Getting into conversations with strangers has been the perfect way to practice my listening and speaking skills and bring my passive knowledge of Spanish closer to fluency.
An Introvert’s Guide To Speaking A Foreign Language — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 4

An Introvert’s Guide To Speaking A Foreign Language — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 4

If you’re shy like me, talking to strangers is not always easy — especially when you aren’t speaking your native language! Here’s how I overcome my hesitation when speaking Spanish.
How Exercise Can Prep You For Language Learning — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 3

How Exercise Can Prep You For Language Learning — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 3

The more willing I am to make mistakes, the more opportunities I have to practice speaking Spanish, and the more encouragement I get from interacting with people. It’s all about having a healthy mindset.
Surprising Lessons From A New Learning Environment — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 2

Surprising Lessons From A New Learning Environment — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 2

More lessons from the road: Changing your learning environment can be a shortcut to getting over your inhibitions and speaking with confidence.
What They Don’t Teach You In Spanish Lessons — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 1

What They Don’t Teach You In Spanish Lessons — Remote Encounters Diary, Part 1

My boyfriend and I were ready for something new in life, but what? How about a six-month bike tour from Patagonia to Peru? Wait a second, I can barely speak Spanish… what have I gotten myself into?
A Bicycle Tour From Patagonia To Peru — Remote Encounters

A Bicycle Tour From Patagonia To Peru — Remote Encounters

For the next 6 months, Pia and Jimmy will be cycling across South America with nothing but camping gear, cameras and a basic grasp of Spanish. Can they go the distance? Will their language skills improve along the way? Follow their video journey here — a new episode every month.