piątek, 16 grudnia 2011

Let the language be your guide

A few days ago I finished my first study book for dutch language, so it theoreticlly means that I reached level A1. I want to highlight the word theoretically, because due to omnipresence of the english language, talking and understanding the Dutch is going well slooooooow. I'm doing better with writing and reading. Still slowly, but I'm improving. I even started correctly pronouncing (though not always) the cruel dutch sounds, like guttural "g", which for me sounds more less like "hrrr" just before you spit (sorry for this unappetizing comparison, but it's best describing the sound). I still can not deal with the "ui" and I feel like it's just impossible to understand... Something in a way of "au", but not really... what the f** is wrong with that?!

I also finally know that in the coming year I'll be starting the real dutch course thanks to financial support of the City Hall. The application to the Inburgering I did send already just after I moved to Nijmegen, but  because of some formalities, which I mentiond before, I go the invitation for the appointment only this Monday (of course! in Holland nothing can be done without a prescheduled appointment). Than they're gonna let me know what are the criteria and possible forms of my education. The only problem is, that they planned for me the meeting next Monday at 2 pm, while I have a flight to Poland on the same day just two hours later from Eindhoven, which is away about 1,5 hour travel time with the public transportation. It can not go like this. We called the Inburgering already few times this week to ask them to postpone the meeting. I still don't know the date of a new appointment, so probably it's gonna be after the New Years. You may ask why am I getting so stressed and panic, keeping calling them and so on? Well, from the well informed and reliable source I know that the budget for the courses for emigrants and going to end with this year in most (if not all) of the dutch cities, including Nijmegen. Luckly yesterday we were informed that we shouldn't be worried: even if I'd sign the contract in 2012, I'm still gonna get it, causeI'm already registered and included into the budget.

And now, since we are already talking about the language issues, I'll share with you one of my epic fails with the dutch language. The other time we were having a nice family dinner in a japanese restaurant. When I asked a waitress for a glass of water, she asked after if I want a sparkling one. I reacted involuntarily with english "Still!" adding a horizontal hand gesture to make my answer more descriptive. The waitress looked at me confused and quickly disapeared in the kitchen, and Rainier (Liza's boyfriend) burst out laughing. I didn't really know what was it about, till a few weeks later I found out how to create an imperative in Dutch. It appeared that in Dutch "Stil!" means "Be quiet!". I literally told the waitress to shut up and the hand gesture definitely did not help to interpret it correctly...

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