https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Had an unexpected conversation with a Dutch person last night!

I live in a rural area in the southern US, so I never thought that I would meet a Dutch person here lol. But last night I got to test my Dutch.

I was at dinner with a bunch of my family and I had my Dutch national soccer team jersey on to show my support for the Netherlands in the Women's World Cup (Wereldkampioenschap voetbal vrouwen) and this man comes up and says "Your team lost, huh? and I said yeah. He asked if I was from the Netherlands and I told him that I'm from the US, but I speak Dutch. He then started speaking to me in Dutch, and we had a conversation about a lot of things. How I've been studying Dutch, that I want to be a customs officer (douanemedewerker), when I visited the Netherlands, stuff like that. He said he was from Utrecht and that he speaks German (Duits) and French (Frans) too.

He started talking about permits (vergunningen) which is above my level lol so I had to redirect the conversation. But it was nice how he just talked to me like I was a native (moedertaalspreker), he didn't try to simplify anything or speak slower. I only made two mistakes: I said "staden" instead of steden (cities) and I said "bezoekde" instead of bezocht (visited). He ended up giving me his card and said he knows of a place nearby that sells Dutch food!

You never know who you're gonna meet that speaks your target language!

July 8, 2019

75 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/NataliaKween02

I know. I ran into some person at the cantina who spoke Spanish and conversed with them using what I had learned on Duo. Which is basically "Hola. Soy una mujer."

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Annie678301

Doing better than me, I met a Spanish girl yesterday and stuttered out a hola. Brought me down to reality, thought I was doing ok.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Dessert-Rose

That's exactly so!

Me, thinking: "Hey! I'm halfway though the tree, have read a German book or two a few times over, and watched a couple o' videos. Bring it on!"
Mum: "There's a girl at the checkout who is learning German too! Come on, talk to her!"

Well, so much for that! Not one German word (except "Auf wiedersehen", which she didn't even hear) was spoken ... She wrote down "duolingo.com" on a piece of paper though, so I guess we got somewhere. Lol! AP4418

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/amplifymysound1

i feel that. I know so much in my head but it never comes out, especially with meeting new people.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/NTRZayden

Hey, I'd say just focus on a few languages that you're passionate about instead of all that (maybe your highest leveled languages or something). He estado aprendiendo espanol por unos anos ahora, pero no puedo hablarlo fluido, en todos. Pero puedo escribirlo bien. Et je veux quitter francais. Et je quitte francais pour pouvoir me concentrer sur le japonais et l'hindi. Good luck. But definitely try speaking, maybe online and not actually in person, with people native to a specific language you want to learn. That will go a long way.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/SiempreJesus

This is true. Im learning spanish and text spanish speakers and it helps a lot. I type very good and read your response in espanol really good. I am not at the level of speaking but am getting there.

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/jairapetyan

It's really important to speak out loud when you are learning a language, otherwise you will be mute when you get an opportunity. There is a really good post in discussions suggesting how to get more out of Duolingo. I think the title is something like "Seven ways to get more out of your DL course."

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/LucilleAtTheBall

I can relate. When I first started learning Spanish, I very pathetically said "Hola" to our gardener, who speaks Spanish. I would just say "Hola" to everyone who spoke Spanish. Makes me cringe just thinking about it.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Royal1223

lol

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/emanandchill

lol :D Thats so funny.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Songve

Sounds like a great experience. No better way to learn than by real conversations.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/HeyMarlana

It's the best way to test your chops, and it's likely a pleasure for the people you're speaking to (knowing you're making the effort to speak their language). Think of what a relief it is when you go somewhere and someone offers English to you. :)

I remember years back helping this older couple make a payment with their debit card at a store who spoke only German. I'm sure my sentence structure wasn't perfect, but it was clear they understood and it got them through their payment. Little moments like that make me feel like it was all worth while. :)

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Darius568602

Actually, your mistake in saying 'bezoekde' is like the kind of mistake Dutch toddlers make. They construct the past not so much on what they hear but what they understand about grammar. It shows that you have an understanding about how the past tense may be constructed, even if you got it wrong in this instance.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Curt391905

Good feedback. Thanks.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Haha dat is goed om te weten. Ik had daar nog nooit over nagedacht. Dankjewel.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Mointante

It is a case of strong verbs (sterke werkwoorden) vs weak verbs (zwakke werkwoorden). There is not a simple rule in Dutch why a verb is one or the other. It boils down to just knowing which one is strong and which one weak. Over time verbs in Dutch can change from strong to weak. For example the past tense of 'waaien' (to blow, as in the wind does) is 'waaide'. 'Woei' is still used at times, but usually regarded as archaic.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Darius568602

'Staden', dat is ook iets wat een klein kind zou kunnen zeggen. Volwassenen vergissen zich soms ook, als ze moe zijn of zo. 'Ik loopte' ipv 'ik liep'.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Little_Tatws

That's so cool! I'm glad you got to practice.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/redneckray

Doesn't it advance your love of the entire world when someone you can see recognizes you and,with love, helps you? You would have done the same in reverse.

Sometimes I think love will conquer the world.

Naw. I always think love will conquer the world

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/RudolfJan

Dank je wel dat je dit mooie verhaal hebt gedeeld.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Ik ben blij dat je het leuk vindt :) veel succes met Swahili!

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Arthuroak

Nice job! Way to go! :)

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Thanks!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshSellsGuns

You actually spooked me a bit, because I'm also from a rural area in southern US, and we have the same kind of hair style (except I semi-recently cut mine much shorter, and it goes the other way) haha.

Anyway, that story is awesome! May be a bit harder for me to run into a Japanese person to talk to.,, but maybe I may run into a German sometime haha. I'm not good enough in either language to speak yet (much less conversationally) but it's an entertaining idea.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Airoblast

Keep at it, so when you do run into a Japanese or German speaker, you can REALLY show off :D

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshSellsGuns

For sure, thank you for the encouragement! You keep it up as well :)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Peenvogel

Goed gedaan, moet een heerlijk gevoel voor je zijn een vreemde taal zo goed te beheersen en bovenal een prachtig woord als 'mededogen' gekozen om gaandeweg je weg daarin te vinden.

Groet, Reinier

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Hartelijk dank, Reinier. :)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/MatthewCan419632

Awesome that you got a chance to practice IRL.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/jamie574779

Nice!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/JennvanOos

Great work! I was pretty confident in my French abilities (from the French classes I took from grade 2 through senior year of high school) but when I went to Paris, the words just flew out of my head. It takes some amount of confidence to try!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Lionne24

Après quelques verres de vin la conversation ira mieux. Moins de stress et moins de gêne. Vas-y!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/ryneatsbeans

that's awesome! congrats on your success!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/MikeNijdam

wat toevallig! Door met mensen te praten die de taal spreken kun je veel leren.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Ja idd!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/binetts

You'll never make the same mistakes again. Real conversations is the best way to learn

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Lionne24

Echt heel goed van je. Ik ken veel Engelse mensen die al heel lang in Nederland wonen maar bijna geen Nederlands spreken, behalve: twee bier alsjeblieft ( in de bar)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Mark841597

Only to find out that the waiter doesn't understand Dutch...

(It is becoming increasingly common that bars, cafés and restaurants in the Netherlands hire staff that doesn't speak Dutch, forcing the customers to switch to English instead)

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/vandale5

Geweldige ervaring, mededogen!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/AwesomeMangoes

How long have you been learning Dutch and duolingo?

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/DanielvanD20707

Goed bezig! :D

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Dankjewel!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Kelvin401862

Thanks for sharing, cool story.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Iris-92

Tof om te horen! Altijd fijn om te kunnen oefenen IRL ;)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Nathan327124

Het verbaast me dat er mensen in mijn taal geïnteresseerd zijn. Wat vind je zo interessant of aantrekkelijk aan het Nederlands dat maakt dat je de taal wilt leren?

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Volgens mij is Nederlands zo’n mooie klinkende taal en ik vind Nederlands ook behoorlijk schattig. Veel woorden zijn zo letterlijk haha en volgens mij zijn Nederland, België en Suriname heel erg prachtige landen :)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/jairapetyan

mededogen, I bet you absolutely made that person's day! When someone speaks your language you suddenly feel so understood, not only linguistically but culturally too.

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Abnormalion

I just wish I could figure out the difference between lese and lesen and liest and haben and hast and have and habt. :/

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/NaericaS

They're for different conjugation Ich lese/habe; du liest/hast; er, sie, es liest/hat; wir lesen/haben; ihr lest/habt; Sie lesen/haben; check out the tips and notes of Present 1 skill for more information

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

You'll get there! Don't be discouraged, learning a language is like a marathon. Just don't give up on it.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/jamie574779

Practice, practice, practice my friend. Watch helpful YouTube videos, try talking to someone in the language you study, gather tips on platforms such as (Duolingo.) Hope I helped. :)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Gwendolynva

That’s German, not Dutch

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/John900661

Dat heb je goed gedaan.

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Sabrina315761

That's awesome dude!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Ohioboy76

Best way to learn! Must’ve Been fun!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/OliverAfterAfton

Cool

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Gwendolynva

Goed gedaan! Heb jij Nederlands alleen geleerd met Duolingo?

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Dankjewel :) Nee, ik gebruik ook andere middelen zoals programma’s op NPO, Nederlandse/Surinaamse vrienden, Anki, boeken, etc.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Tamerlane9

Thats so cool! How inspiring... makes me wanna keep workin at my spanish, in case someone spanish approaches me!!

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Chickenator1944

Nice story! Thanks for sharing!! :D

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/varkentje123

That's cool, man! But I wonder what makes you think you only made two mistakes? ;)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mededogen

Haha I’m very self-critical, so I know I made those two mistakes. That doesn’t mean my Dutch was near flawless though. I probably said things that were technically correct, but didn’t sound natural or maybe I worded things in a way that a native speaker wouldn’t. It’s a never ending journey of improvement :)

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/KarlynQues

Lol

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Ashley439833

Thats so cool !!! The best way to learn a language is by speaking it and experiencing the culture as much as you may be able to no one perfects a language without conversing and the more you do the better if you end up eating some Dutch food let us know what it was like lol

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/camilagonc609393

that sounds so great and this You never know who you're gonna meet that speaks your target language! is so true

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/EJNNJE

Was Duo your only source of Dutch language instruction?

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Saleh247

thats cute

July 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/sophinaz

Congrats on learning dutch! Ik spreek een beetje Nederlands! I am currently learning Italian on here and dutch at home, because it's in the family. It is really hard to learn a language like dutch, (because it is not a romance language coming directly from latin), but it is a very wonderful language to learn. I recently visited my cousin in the Netherlands, and had a wonderful time! I had stroopwafels, which I recommend to all if you are going to try dutch food. It 2 really thin waffles, with caramel usually in the middle, but can also be seen with other things like honey, or other types of chocolate. They may be expensive, but I found them in World Market. They also like licorice, which, sorry dad, but I did not like at all. Don't recommend that! But if you get a chance to eat in the Netherlands if you ever go, make sure to try out their crapes! They are so delicious. They are huge, spanning the who plate, and with that special sugar they use on their crapes. It is amazing there! They also have amazing tulips that come out in like late March or early April, and they're beautiful! I really recommend Amsterdam as the city! Congrats again on having courage to speak to someone with a language you are learning! It's hard to get the courage with natives!!

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Ladin666

The other day I got to say ya nye ponimayu russkiy, v gavarite pa anglisky? to a russian guest speaking 100mph, so that was nice...

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Martin987925

I work for a Dutch company in the UK, i have a quite basic grasp of it, but i've not yet spoken to any of my colleagues in their language, i find the thought quite daunting! I find it a lot easier to read Dutch than to speak it, and whereas i can pick out some of what they are saying when i am in The Netherlands i realise how much i don't yet know!

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Pixelsmash

I suppose your newfound conversation partner had no idea he'd run into someone speaking Dutch either. It's really cool you got to practice! Don't worry about the mistakes, those are things some of us 'natives' can accidentally slip in as well.

More importantly, did you visit the store selling Dutch food? What did you think of it?

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/ZappyMorgan

Cool that's what it's about

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/PatchyPatchy

One day I will have the confidence to talk with someone else! But maybe not today.

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Mikerulez101

That's very cool! I'm an American who's living in the Netherlands now for grad school and I'm also learning Dutch. The people here are VERY friendly which makes me more comfortable to attempt to speak the language with them.

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Suited_

Awesome!

July 11, 2019
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