Thursday, February 3, 2011

De Tandarts!


Some good news from yesterday.  As you saw from my last post, I was pretty upset about all of this Dutch crap, but I have some good news now at least.  I went to the dentist yesterday and did the whole thing from answering questions about what I've been doing to listening to what the hygienist said and making my next appointment helemaal in het Nederlands!  It was pretty crazy.  I walked in and the receptionist of course starting in Dutch so I responded...easy so far, no big deal.  Then the hygienist and started in Dutch...she new from last time that I was there I spoke English, but I thought...hmmm, let's go for it and see what happens.  After about 2-3 minutes, I was thinking wow, no English yet.  Then about 1/2 way though I was getting pretty psched and when it was almost over I was really hoping I would not have to switch to English since I did so good, and...I didn't have to!  I walked out of the office and literally said out loud "Oh my God..."

The song above is a funny Dutch song by the way it is called "Het is altijd Lente in de Ogen van de Tandarts Assistente."  It means It is always Springtime in the eye's of the dentist's assistant.  Haha

Some other things...

I got a good number of compliments at meetup last night by a woman who lived in the Netherlands for 30 years, a native Dutch woman (She even told me I did not sound American,) and an American dude who's Dutch was pretty good.  I was pretty happy  about that too.

Then today at work someone at work came up to me and said that HR was talking about me to him.  I was like WTF?  Why?  Well I sent HR and email a few weeks ago (in Dutch) and apparently they were impressed and are telling people about it now.  That was cool to hear, but at the same time, the guy told me all of this in English, so... I don't know

Finally a girl last night at meetup (who was only 3 weeks in Holland) told me about livemocha.com.  It is so cool and I am already addicted.  You can basically learn any language you want while helping people learn the language(s) you already know.  They teach you things, then test you on them.  After that you have a writing exercise that gets (almost immediately) review by real Dutch people.  Then you review someones English submission.  After that you speak a paragraph that they give you, and submit it, again almost instant feedback.  Then finally you review someone's English submission.  After that you can move on to the next lesson.  It is really great.

Also, I almost forgot, I got into the Dutch classes here in Haarlem.  I start already on Monday!  I was too late to take the intake test (they were last week) to see what group I should be in, but they said that the teacher should be able to figure it out of me next week.  I am looking forward to this but am going to be a bit reluctant to get too excited.  So far every time I get really excited about a new learning tool in Dutch, I expect magic and that never happens.  I am just going to go to the classes, hope for the best, and see what happens.  Wish me luck!

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