brain cramps!

Vlaamse een punt een

Over the past few days, I have been spoken to in Flemish by a stranger on a few occasions, and what happens? My brain shuts down completely – I can’t think of words in English, let alone in Vlaamse! I know, I know. I was teasing Mahmoud before, and now I’m having the same problem! Then again, today I said negentien and he wrote 18, and I said, “Nee achttien, negentien,” and he wrote 19 and said “achttien?”
Soon afterwards, as I insisted that I am zesenveertig, Patricia and Marsi both did the basic math, 2008-1963 = 45. How is it possible that I convinced myself (for weeks if not months, mind you) that I am a year older than I actually am? Marsi was triumphant: “Then you are the same age as my mother!”
I knew I was in trouble this morning when I met Hucine on the way to class and he addressed me in goed Nederlands. Bouchra was already on my case last week. The first time I wrote some answers on the board, and Anne asked de klasse if there were any mistakes, Bouchra nailed as many of my errors as she could! (I’m just waiting for my chance to get even, hehehe!) ­čśë
Friendships are developing . . . Topi has already promised to take me to Uganda. ­čÖé Mahmoud encouraged Tolu when she hesitated over reading out loud: “Just try! You have to!” Ayman wants to tell me his story. Marinela was delighted that Bulgaria was listed first, “as it should be,” in the last blogpost. (I think we are going to have to keep houd onze ogen op haar! That’s “keep our eyes on her.” Denk ik!)
Meer slaap zal helpen. Austublieft!

3 thoughts on “brain cramps!”

  1. Welcome to my world, Steph. Imagine talking to a Mumbaiker when the language spoken is
    10% British English
    20% Indian English (totally different, I assure you)
    35-40% crossover with Farsi
    rest% Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Urdu, etc.
    Let’s just say that I have lost all of my language skills completely. It’s a good thing I am a mathematician and the expectation bar is set so low…
    I just wanted to let you know that you are never far from my thoughts; it cheers me to think of you having a ball in Brussells, particularly on this dark and terrible day in Mumbai.
    Take care of yourself, my friend, and Happy Thanksgiving.

  2. Patricia, you are ENTIRELY too happy about how hard I’m struggling with this taalsoup! I have to say, though, that I think Shabnam just described a thicker stew than we’ve got, eh?

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