Tuesday 5 February 2013

Back to school

Fortunately no school uniform for me!
There is something I feel very strongly about. It annoyed me when I lived in the Netherlands, it annoys me over here. When you move to another country to work, I feel you should talk the language. Especially if you will be working with the host nationals. And if you know before the move that you will be moving, you should learn the language before you're moving. No ifs or buts or anythings about it. (This doesn't apply to refugees)

So, before I made my way over to Norway, I learnt the language. Granted, it wasn't university level, but then again, I am not on university level in the Netherlands either! And from day one I decided the best way forward was to speak Norwegian. At times I didn't have a clue what people were talking about and I would have to ask again and again, but over the last two months I have made great progress. 

And then I got the question whether I would like to go to Norwegian class again. Which I of course did. Because it will help me further along (besides, it's free: I think the boss is paying) and that can only be a good thing. This morning was the first lesson. There were several other people there as well: a Moroccan woman who had lived in Norway for 22 years, an Afghani man who had lived in Norway for a long time too, a Slovakian man: same thing again. And there was us: six people from the same company. Four Polish, one Icelandic and one Dutch (ie me). 

The first lesson was mainly used to introduce ourselves, do a little writing and a little talking/reading aloud. And at the end of the lesson I was told that if I proved to be as good as it looked like I was, I might have to move to a different class. One where the majority of people are Norwegians looking to refresh their grammar skills. Exciting!! Next week there will not be a class (due to the winter holiday) and then it will run the rest of the winter and spring and then again in the autumn. I will be busy!


  1. You prove that aptitude + attitude is the key. Obviously, you have the aptitude, but I imagine that all sorts of people have the innate aptitude but not the attitude to go with it.

  2. All languages are worthwhile to learn they are all important for communication with people ! I never learned dutch/flemish, but I understand and even speak when it's necessary ! Where I live they all speak only French. Too lazy to learn Flemish !

  3. I agree with you. If I moved to France I would learn to speak French. Here is the USA we have fallen far behind on that. My ancestors came from Europe and only spoke Bohemian. They had to learn English to live here. Okay it wasn't a rule but if you wanted to do anything here you had to speak English. However it doesn't seem to be that way anymore and it really gets to me. On the phone, at the bank, etc. you have to choose English or Spanish. There should not be a choice however I do like when the tourist towns in other countries will have a menu for you in English! Okay...I'm stepping off my soapbox.

    So glad your doing so well. Sounds like you impressed your teacher!


Any weighty (and not so weighty) comments are welcome!